Raising awareness

Three essential elements of an inclusive environment are:

  • Physical and sensory access;

  • Ensuring that staff and managers know how a building is designed and their duties in facilitating access; and

  • Communicating to the public / residents that a place is designed to be accessible.

Rachael's experience of working on all types of residential projects led to being invited to speak about accessible homes at the RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) Inclusive Design Consultants Conference in October 2011 and the NRAC / CAE Autumn Conference in October 2012 and October 2014. Rachael also provides CPD sessions for architects.

In 2013 Rachael was a guest speaker on a walking tour of a suburb of Zurich organised by Ask The Bat as part of the Invisible Zürichs programme of architectural events about perceptions of cities.

The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
— George Bernard Shaw

Access groups

Working with consultative access groups is an essential part of the design process for large developments. Withernay Projects can facilitate sessions and provide tactile plans, which are designed for people with sight loss but other people also find them useful.

Experience with consultative access groups includes:

  • Built Environment Access Panel (BEAP) - Review of proposals for development in Stratford City with the London Legacy Development Corporation;

  • Hammersmith & Fulham Action on Disability (HAFAD) - Westfield’s proposals for Croydon’s Whitgift Centre;

  • Shakespeare’s Globe – Jacobean Theatre;

  • Westfield White City Extension; and

  • British Museum Access Advisory Group - Proposed North West Wing.

CPD sessions

Continuing Professional Development sessions can be tailored to suit particular aspects of the subject, such as historic buildings, residential design or public spaces, or be a general introduction to access and inclusive design.

Previous sessions include:

  • October 2014 - Accessible housing: Towards real choice at NRAC Autumn Conference;

  • June 2014 - Introduction to inclusive design for Soda;

  • May 2014 - Residential access standards for Foster + Partners;

  • October 2012 - NRAC / CAE Autumn Conference; and

  • October 2011 - RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) Inclusive Design Consultants Conference.