Better access for the disabled earns praise for town hall

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The Hebden Bridge Town Hall redevelopment has been highlighted in a new book focusing on disabled access.

Architect Alison Grant, of Heptonstall, has featured the project as a fine example of how an old building can be transformed into an inclusive and accessible community hub, in the Access Audit Handbook, a guide to ensuring buildings meet legal standards on disabled access.

Photographs for the case study were provided by former Hebden Royd town councillor Jade Smith, who is a wheelchair user and is now able to access the town 
hall independently for the first time.

She said: “As someone who uses a wheelchair, I understand the frustrations of not being able to enter and use buildings independently. The town hall 
is a great example of what can 
be achieved with careful 
planning and design and I was delighted to be able to contribute to Alison’s book.”

The former councillor was consulted during the early design stages and was able to explain the access difficulties she had encountered.

Changes during the redevelopment mean disabled people can now access the main council chamber independently and all floors are accessible via a lift or platform lift. Other improvements include modern accessible toilets.

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