The Institute of Hospitality has endorsed an accessibility course designed to enlighten operators in affordable ways to take advantage of the £2b market for disabled people.
The ‘Accessibility for All' course has been developed by Special Catey Award winner Arnold Fewell, managing director of AVF marketing and a permanent wheelchair user.
It will include the business, legal and moral case for attracting disabled guests, identification of low-cost solutions to improve customer service, and how to attract this key market segment.
Two course are planned for next month. One will be held at Rudding Park hotel near Harrogate on 12 September and another at One Great George Street, in Westminster, on 19 September.
The interactive events will enable operators to understand how to attract the accessibility market as well as better understand its needs through simulating the experience of visiting a hospitality business with a disability.
Fewell said: "When I first became a wheelchair user I was horrified at the way disabled people were treated at hotels and venues. Rather than get angry about it I wanted to make real changes for disabled people and as an ex-hotel general manager I wanted to make sure hotels benefitted from what VisitEngland highlight as a £2b market."
Wendy Greenhalgh, One Great George Street, added: "Accessibility is very important to us and by placing a huge importance on this it has helped us to win some very large contracts. Many of our staff have been trained by Arnold and he has advised us on many aspects of accessibility."