Skip to content
This website uses cookies to help us understand the way visitors use our website. We can't identify you with them and we don't share the data with anyone else. Find out more in our privacy policy.

The Access Association AGM and Conference 25th September 2012, The Floral Pavilion New Brighton

The Legacy of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Future of Accessible Sport in Great Britain / The need and demand to make sport accessible will see the door to solutions opening in September 2012. 

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson will be keynote speaker at the Access Association AGM and Conference 2012, which is entitled ‘The Legacy Of The 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Future Of Accessible Sport In Great Britain’.

Additionally Neil Smith Head of Inclusive Design at Buro Happold Ltd will be the second keynote speaker. His Current experience includes the London 2012 Masterplan, Basketball Arena and Media Centre, the Glasgow National Indoor Sports Arena and Velodrome and the Legacy Community Scheme for the Olympic Park. As head of the team at Buro Happold he has overseen their work on the 2012 Stadium, Waterpolo venue and Velodrome as well as Tottenham Hotspurs proposed new stadium.

And the third Keynote Speaker will be Joyce Cook OBE, A long-time campaigner for equality and inclusion for disabled people in football and other sports; Joyce is managing and founding director, Centre for Access to Football in Europe (CAFE). Joyce is also Chair – Level Playing Field (LPF formally National Association of Disabled Supporters).

The half-day conference is sponsored by Total Hygiene and is to be held at The Floral Pavilion, New Brighton, on the Wirral on the 25th of September 2012. It will feature high level speakers from UK sport and sport management, and will focus on how to deliver tangible inclusive solutions. The conference will finish with a question and answer session with a prestigious panel and this includes; Rob Young, Northwest Coordinator for the 2012 Games, Joyce Cook, OBE Chair – Level Playing Field. Gary Deards Vice Chair – Level Playing Field (Lead, Stadia Development) and Peter Swordy, Peter is Senior Operations Manager at Wembley Stadium. This role also includes Disability Liaison Officer. He has been working at Wembley since June 1999 in a variety of roles including HR, Commercial Training and Operations.

The conference will be complimented by an exhibition dedicated to improving accessibility to sport and sports venues.

Mike Elkerton, Chair of the Access Association North West Region, The Access Association elaborates;

“According to the Office for Disability Issues there are over ten million people with a limiting long term illness, impairment or disability in Great Britain, the prevalence of disability rises with age.

Around one in 20 children are disabled, compared to around one in seven working age adults and almost one in two people over state-pension age in Great Britain. Disabled people remain significantly less likely to participate in cultural, leisure and sporting activities than non-disabled people.

Latest data shows disabled people are more likely to have attended a cinema, museum or gallery than in 2005/06. However disabled people are less likely to have participated in sporting activities, attended historic environment sites or a library over the same period.

The Equality Act 2010, along with many other provisions, makes it unlawful for a service provider to discriminate against a disabled person. With this and other legislation in mind there are sound legal and financial reasons why anyone involved in building and operating leisure and sports venues should know how to provide for disabled people.” Baroness Grey-Thompson adds; “I really hope a lasting legacy of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will be to raise awareness of the need to make sport accessible for everyone. Sport has the power to change lives and affect social change, let’s make sure that disabled people can play a big part in that change.”

Non Access Association members will be able to attend the conference, places need to be booked in advance and cost £50. Attendance can count towards CPD credits and certificates are available. The main conference will be complimented by an exhibition dedicated to improving accessibility to sport and sports venues.

For more information please visit:

Contact details for publication and event details are : Mike Elkerton (Chair of North West Region of the Access Association) Tel: Office 0151 201 5277; Mobile 07986 956 202 Or Katy Heath (Access Association Secretary) Tel: 0151 924 8152 Email: