The Outsiders charity will once again have a presence at the Glastonbury Festival with a team of 11 volunteers offering a range of free treatments to festival goers and performers registered as disabled.
Over the four main festival days (Thursday 25 to Sunday 28 June) therapies such as Indian Head massage, full body massage, reiki and reflexology will be on offer in the Disability Field to festival goers and their carers, and also performers registered as disabled.
There is also an advice and support desk, which charges phones – an invaluable tool, for free as well as providing refreshments, information and general support and advice. Wheelchairs can also be charged up overnight at no cost
Workshops are offered in the Field featuring magic, dance, art and crafts and music entertainment.
Over a number of years, Outsiders has received regular feedback from disabled festival goers – many of whom see the support that the Disability Field offers as the only way that they manage to attend the festival. Many of these festival goers however, have only limited access to the wider range of activities and events offered and this has led to a proposal being put forward to Glastonbury for a new stage – The Eclectic Stage – to be based in the Disability Field accessible only to those staying there.
The proposal is for three lunchtime shows to be scheduled for Thursday, Friday and Saturdayfeaturing some of the wide range of acts from the outside stages – including any major acts prepared to play on a small acoustic stage.
There would also be an open-mic slot for disabled festival goers with an act to offer. Children and/or parents and others would perform alongside the other billed acts.
Tulloch Kempe, Co-ordinator of Outsiders at Glastonbury, said: “For many disabled festival goers, it is not possible for them to go out during the day so having another stage based in the Disability Field would be a way of bringing more of the festival directly to them and thereby building on the great access work Glastonbury has already achieved to date.”