Narrowing the educational gap between deaf and hearing children

20 05 2011

According to the 2009 statistics from the Royal National Institute for the Deaf (RNID), 840 babies are born each year in the UK with significant deafness, and 20,000 children aged 0 to 15 years are moderately to profoundly deaf. Despite this, educational provision for these children has been identified as being limited.

In light of this the Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre at UCL (DCAL) held a debate on the gap between deaf and hearing children’s educational achievements on 10 May. The debate was well attended and dynamically argued.

Article continues….

The NDCS have a number of news articles and events on opportunities and services for deaf children and their families. Ian’s blog, Campaigning for Deaf Children, is a great resource for news on what’s happening on the ground, so check it out!

The amazing Major Phil Packer

22 04 2010

Major Packer lost the use of his legs in Afghanistan and raised over £700,000 last year by completing the London Marathon in 2 weeks, on crutches, for the Help for Heroes campaign.

This year, he plans to complete 26 miles in 26 hours for 26 charities, in the Virgin London Marathon on 25 April 2010. Each mile is dedicated to a charity helping disadvantaged people. Mile 3 is dedicated to the National Deaf Children’s Society.  A deaf 17 year old, Jade Potter, will be completing the 3rd mile alongside Phil. Phil’s best friend Duncan is deaf, and he clearly remembers the frustrations and difficulties Duncan experienced when he was younger.

If you’d like to donate money for Phil’s 3rd mile, and help NDCS support young deaf children, you can do so here. You can also post a badge to your Facebook profile to raise awareness – there are only three more days to go!

New cinema advert for accessible screenings

11 05 2009

A new cinema advert aimed at raising audience awareness of the availability of subtitled and audio described screenings at UK cinemas will hit the big screen next month.

You can view the ad HERE.

UK cinemas lead the world in making their sites accessible to people with disabilities. More than 300 UK cinema sites have facilities to provide both subtitled and audio described films for people with hearing or sight problems respectively. And the number of subtitled film screenings per month now stands at around 2,000 nationwide, with more than 700 films now available in accessible formats.

But despite this provision, levels of attendance of many screenings remain low. The new ad – produced by Creative Mwldan with the support of a range of cinema industry interests – is an attempt to address that, and is aimed as much at the friends and family of those with such disabilities and the disabled customers themselves.

Looking forward to the new ad campaign, CEA Chief Executive Phil Clapp said:

I am hugely grateful to industry colleagues for all of their support in bringing this advert to the screen. We very much hope that it will encourage a large number of customers with disabilities to recognise that the cinema is for them as much as it is for any other member of the public.

Welcoming this initiative, Lesley-Anne Alexander, Chief Executive of the Royal National Institute of Blind People said:

RNIB welcomes the launch of the cinema access advertisement as part of the continued efforts of the UK film and cinema industry to promote and increase access to films and cinemas for blind and partially sighted people. We look forward to continue working with them on this journey.

Jo Campion, Head of Campaigns at the National Deaf Children’s Society commented:

Every deaf child has the right to the same opportunities as a hearing child, and that includes being able to enjoy going to the cinema to see the latest films. The National Deaf Children’s Society welcomes the new cinema advert and hopes it will lead to greater awareness of the availability and importance of subtitled films for deaf children and young people.

Derek Brandon, editor of – the industry-sponsored website and information service for ‘accessible’ cinema – added:

This new advert will be viewed by thousands of people every week nationwide. Many people know someone with a hearing or sight problem and we hope that people who see the ad will inform others, creating awareness of the world-leading ‘access’ services provided by hundreds of UK cinemas.


The UK leads the world in ‘accessible’ cinema. Most major cinemas now have facilities to screen the latest films with subtitles for people with hearing problems, and audio description for people with sight problems.

Most popular releases are available with subtitles & audio description ‘files’. These files can be used to screen shows on 35mm-based systems (installed in more than 300 UK cinemas), as well as on digital systems (installed in more than 250 UK cinemas). ‘Accessible’ shows are now a regular feature in hundreds of cinemas nationwide.


“I served in Iraq, came home last year with permanent damage to my hearing…”
Click HERE to read hundreds of quotes and reports from people with hearing or sight problems who have discovered – or rediscovered – the joys of cinema-going, thanks to subtitles and audio description.



Subtitled: Star Trek, Wolverine, Coraline, Hannah Montana, State of Play, Monsters vs Aliens, I Love You Man, Fast & Furious, Observe & Report, Let The Right One In and more…

Shows are added to the website when announced – view by film or location at Your Local


Subtitled trailers:

New! Summer 2009 preview trailer! Star Trek, Wolverine, Transformers 2, New Harry Potter, Terminator Salvation, Observe & Report, Angels & Demons, I Love You Man, Fast & Furious, Race to Witch Mountain, Monsters vs Aliens, Marley & Me, Up (Pixar) and many more at Your Local


About cinema subtitles & audio description.

“Fact is that as we age, loss of some hearing or sight is inevitable… Access to film via subtitles & audio description is something that we all may appreciate, eventually”

Cinema subtitles (properly known as captions) are displayed along the bottom of the cinema screen. They include the spoken text as well as descriptions of sounds such as ‘door creaks’, ‘footsteps approaching’, ‘gunshot’ etc.

Cinema audio description is a recorded narration which explains – in gaps in the dialogue – what’s happening on screen. It’s delivered through wireless headphones – only the wearer hears the audio description soundtrack. One blind cinema-goer has likened the experience to listening to a Harry Potter audio book, but with all the actors voicing their own parts, and the addition of the film soundtrack – in fabulous surround sound.

“It’s the accessible cinema experience: SEE the dialogue! HEAR the action!”



Your Local Cinema .com has won the ‘People’s Choice Award’ at the Daily Mail Enterprise Awards. Thanks to everyone who voted! Coverage is HERE.


Your Local Cinema .com is a non-profit group sponsored by the UK film industry.
Interested in part-sponsorship? Please contact View existing sponsors HERE.

Deaf children have gripes too…

22 08 2008

Check out Ian’s blog Campaigning for deaf children and bookmark it if you have, know or work with deaf children! Ian works for NDCS (National Deaf Children’s Society) and is a fount of knowledge on issues for deaf children. A very useful person to have around! I suspect he has been blackmailed (with the key to the chocolate biscuit cupboard) into giving bits of insider knowledge on what’s happening in Parliament, so make sure you check out Campaigning for deaf children.

– But, more importantly, WHO’S been scoffing my chocolate digestives?!

Run, Ian, Run!

10 02 2008

My friend Ian has gone mad, like a fool he has decided to run the London Marathon. I felt sorry for him as we had a good night out on Friday and an open bar, and he felt unable to have some of the free wine that was on offer, good stick that he is. (The wine didn’t go to waste, I helped out there, tee hee – thanks Ian and when’s your *next* marathon?!)

Ian says …

Holy crap, I’ve signed up to a marathon…

Yes, I’m going to run 26.2 miles in London this April. I do so in the knowledge that my height will apparently shrink by about 2 inches by the end of the race and that my face will turn a shade of beetroot red not yet discovered by scientists, and then stay like that for a week. I also risk some new painful injury to my leg in a year where, at times, my leg has seemed perilously close to just falling off.

But none of this matters because I am running to raise money for the National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS). NDCS is one of my favourite charities and is the national charity dedicated to creating a world without barriers for deaf children and young people. Many deaf children are born to hearing parents who know little about deafness or how to communicate effectively with a deaf person. Without the right support, many will struggle to develop educationally and risk becoming isolated, lacking in confidence and cut off from the world.

NDCS work to counter this and do lots of great things. They’ve given me a job for a start! (I’m the NDCS Campaigns Officer) But they also provide information to families of deaf children about all aspects of deafness so that deaf children can prosper and grow. They run lots of events for deaf children so they can counter feelings of isolation and get together with their deaf peers. And they lobby and campaign across the country to improve services to deaf children.

So… please dig deep and sponsor me! £1 a mile would be amazing and would give me an incentive not to do a Jade Goody and give up after a mile.

His sponsorship page can be found at The Noon attempts to run a marathon. You can donate online safely through his sponsorship page.