The Scotch Whisky Experience

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1 The Scotch Whisky Experience Access Statement 2015 This access statement does not contain personal opinions as to our suitability for those with disabilities, but aims to accurately describe the facilities and services that we offer to our visitors. 1

2 Table of Contents Content: Welcome What We Offer Getting Here - Train - Bus - Tram - Taxi - Drop-Off Point - Car Arrival, Main Entrance, Reception & Ticketing Area - Entrance - Reception & Ticketing Area The Tour Public Toilets Lift Amber Restaurant Shop Additional Information Future Plans Feedback Contact Information Page:

3 Welcome The Scotch Whisky Experience is a visitor attraction, open every day of the year except Christmas day, offering a range of tour experiences, tastings, a whisky shop, bar, restaurant and private events. The main silver and gold tours run all day every day with the morning masterclass running at 10am and the platinum tour is the final tour of the day. The silver and gold tours start with the barrel ride as you take a journey through a replica whisky distillery. Our expert tour guide then takes guests through the flavours and characteristic of the single malt whisky producing regions, followed by an introduction to the art of blending and finally a tasting in the world s largest collection of Scotch whisky. Gold tour guests can then enjoy a membership to our Scotch Whisky Appreciation Society with an introductory tasting tray of four single malts and ongoing benefits. Our morning masterclass is perfect for the real whisky enthusiast with a more one to one approach and an in depth look at the world of Scotch. The platinum tour is a luxury, end of day tasting tour with an in depth viewing of the stunning whisky collection. The shop, whisky bar and Amber restaurant can be visited independently of the tour experiences and private events can be booked in the beautiful top floor suite. We offer: A completely accessible tour and building for those with limited mobility. 15 languages on tour, and hearing impaired scripts offered in all 15 languages. A hearing loop is available at all till points. Accessible toilets. Catering for most dietary requirements, with prior knowledge. Front of the Scotch Whisky Experience 3

4 Getting Here The Scotch Whisky Experience is located in the Old Town of Edinburgh, beside Edinburgh Castle. For full details and a detailed map of how to reach us, please refer to our website at or search Scotch Whisky Experience at Alternatively you can plan your journey by car or public transport using a journey planning website such as or simply enter your postcode and ours, which is EH1 2NE. Train The nearest railway station is Waverley Station (0.6 miles away). For information about the accessibility of the station see: There are taxi ranks located outside of the railway station at the Market Street exit, and these are accessible by lift. To ensure an accessible taxi, please pre-book by calling City Cabs (www.citycabs.co.uk) at We do not offer a collection service. Bus Tram There are no buses that go directly to the Scotch Whisky Experience however there are many stops in the surrounding area. For information about city bus ticket options see Buses 3, 5, 7, 8, 14, 30, 31, 33, 37 and 49 all cross over, and stop on North Bridge; it is then a 0.4 mile walk to the Scotch Whisky Experience. For more information about the accessibility of city buses see Edinburgh tour buses stop at the bottom of Castlehill, which is just a short walk from the Scotch Whisky Experience. Edinburgh also offers a tram service, which stops 0.5 miles from the Scotch Whisky Experience. For information about city tram ticket options see https://edinburghtrams.com/tickets/ticket-options For more information about the accessibility of city trams see Edinburgh Trams offer transport to and from Edinburgh Airport. Taxi If you require an accessible taxi this can be booked in advance with City Cabs ( ). Drop Off Point To access the Scotch Whisky Experience customers can be dropped off at our front entrance. From April to October there is restricted vehicular access to Castlehill; however, drop offs and pick-ups will be allowed for disabled visitors. There is no kerb. 4

5 Drop-off can be made outside of the Scotch Whisky Experience, and there is no kerb Car There is no parking onsite, however there is an NCP car park on Castle Terrace. The postcode for your sat nav is EH1 2EW and it is located 0.4 miles from the main entrance of the Scotch Whisky Experience. The NCP car park has 750 spaces, 6 of which are blue badge accessible bays. Blue badge parking is charged at the normal parking rate. For more details please see There are intercoms located at the entrance, exit and pay machines if assistance is required. There is on-road parking around the Scotch Whisky Experience besides the above described NCP car park, however this too is paid by the hour. The surface from the car park to the entrance of the Scotch Whisky Experience is a mix of both paved and cobblestones. Depending on the route one takes it is either an incline, or steps. The lighting in the NCP car park is new LED lighting. Street lights light the route to the Scotch Whisky Experience. Entrance to the NCP car park below Edinburgh Castle on Castle Terrace. 5

6 Arrival, Main Entrance, Reception and Ticketing Area Entrance All streets that lead to the Scotch Whisky Experience are on an incline. The streets are cobbled, and are uneven in most places. The pavement is flush with the road, so there is no kerb. The gentlest route is along the Lawnmarket. There is no intercom or call button required to gain access to the building during opening hours. The main entrance to the Scotch Whisky Experience is level without steps, and therefore a ramp is not required. The entrance door to the Scotch Whisky Experience is an automatic sliding door which is 840mm or 33 inches wide. Reception and Ticketing Approach, and entrance door to the Scotch Whisky Experience The reception is on the ground floor. This area is level throughout. There is bench seating available in this area should it be required. The floor is made of tile. The area is well and evenly lit by ceiling spot lights. 6

7 There is a low counter desk area suitable for wheelchair users. There is no glass divide at reception, therefore assistance can be given to those lip reading. There is a complimentary ticket policy for carers; this will exclude any whisky consumption. There is a hearing loop system in place for visitors once they are at any of the till points. If required, assistance can be given through the use of hard of hearing scripts, magnifying glasses or pens and pads of paper. There is clear directional signage throughout the attraction. The Scotch Whisky Experience reception desk, with low counter access The Tour The tour is guided, and can include either scripts for the hearing impaired, or audio guides that are offered in 15 different languages. Our standard tour lasts just under one hour. There is low level music played in one area of the tour, and a guide will speak to their group over this music. The barrel car ride has an element of flashing lights, however this is only the first ten minutes and customers can opt out of this option if required. The barrel car ride also has a wheelchair option which staff will assist the customers with. Door widths vary throughout the tour with the narrowest width being 850 mm or 33.5 inches. There are no doors that customers will have to push open throughout their tour. Most of the tour is seated, and can be tailored to be seated where it is not. Visitors will not be required to climb any steps. The tour floor surfaces vary between tile, wood and marble. 7

8 The tour is well lit throughout, with the exception of our dark barrel car ride, and the low level lighting in both the lobby of the collection and our Sense of Scotland presentation rooms. Lighting type varies throughout with a mixture of fluorescent, halogen, spotlights and LED. Sense of Scotland room Barrel car ride - wheelchair accessible barrel cars are available Public Toilets There are public WCs on both the 1 st floor and on the lower ground floor. There is a unisex accessible WC on the lower ground floor. The accessible WC is accessed by either a set of stairs or the lift. In total there are 18 steps leading to the floor which the WC is located on. The door to the accessible WC is 800 mm or 31.5 inches wide and it opens outwards by a handle. The accessible WC has a thumb lock. There is clear space to the left side of the WC for a wheelchair, and this space is 780 mm or 30.7 inches wide. 8

9 The height of the WC from floor to seat is 480 mm or 19 inches high. There are horizontal grab rails located to the left of the WC. The sink is 820 cm or 32.3 inches high. There is clear space underneath, and the taps are motion censored. The floor in the WC is tiled, and the lighting is dichroic. There are baby changing facilities located in the accessible WC. There is an emergency pull cord. There is no background music played. Accessible WC with baby changing facilities Lift The lift provides access to most floors of the Scotch Whisky Experience. It cannot access the mezzanine level of the shop. It serves the restaurant, reception, tour, bars and event and office spaces. The entry door to the lift is 800 mm or 31.5 inches, and the lift is 1390 mm or 55 inches deep. There are both audio and visual announcements informing visitors of the floor they have accessed. The buttons in the lift do have raised lettering; no braille is used. There is a mirror located on the left hand side of the lift. The lighting in the lift is LED spotlights. The flooring in the lift is a PVC nonslip. There is no background music played in the lift. 9

10 The inside of the lift Amber Restaurant Catering at the Scotch Whisky Experience is in Amber Restaurant which is located on the lower ground floor. Booking in advance is strongly advised at peak times such as during the Edinburgh Festival in August. Amber Restaurant is accessible by both lift and stairs (18 steps). The door width to access Amber Restaurant is 860 mm or 33.9 inches wide, and there is no door for visitors to open. There is a slight incline into the restaurant, which you enter by means of a ramp. There is ample room to access tables by wheelchair or pushchair, and assistance is available if required. Amber Restaurant offers table service, however customers may order drinks at the bar. There is a variety of seating in Amber Restaurant. Customers can choose either high or low tables, easy chairs, tub chairs, bench seating or bar stools. The tub chairs have arms, while the easy chairs do not. The clear height underneath high tables is 835 mm or 32.3 inches. The clear height underneath low tables is 730 mm or 28.7 inches. Highchairs are available upon request. Amber Restaurant is lit by halogen spotlights. The floor surfaces in Amber Restaurant are a combination of Amtico, which is printed to look like wood, and textured vinyl. Dietary requirements can be catered for with advanced notice. There are vegetarian and gluten free options on the menu for customers which would not need to be pre-selected as well as information on the 13 officially recognised EU allergens. 10

11 There are a variety of small dishes currently available on the menu; however all dishes may be adapted to suit the visitor should a smaller portion be required. Menus are available in large print upon request. Staff are happy to read and explain menus to customers if required. The crockery is white, while the tables are made of wood. White table cloths are used for private events. Easy grip cutlery is available upon request. The nearest WCs and accessible WCs to Amber Restaurant are located beside the main entrance to the restaurant. There is soft background music playing in the restaurant. Amber Restaurant Amber Bar, in Amber Restaurant 11

12 Shop There is level access to our shop which is located on the ground floor, and does not require steps nor a lift to access. There are two entrances to the shop. The main entrance door is 1200 mm or 47.2 inches wide while the side entrance is 840 mm or 33.1 inches wide. These doors will be open, and visitors will not need to open them. The shop covers two floors, with a small mezzanine level only accessed by stairs. Our staff are available should customers require assistance regarding merchandise from the mezzanine level. The shop has ample room between fixtures for a wheelchair or pushchair, and staff are available should customers require assistance navigating between fixtures throughout. There is a low counter desk area suitable for wheelchair users. Merchandise is displayed on shelves up to a height of 1880 mm or 74 inches. There is low level background music playing as well as whisky-related noises which come from the wonder wall audio visual feature. There is a hearing loop system available at the till points with clear signage. There is seating available on the mezzanine level, however it could be arranged if needed on the ground floor level as well. Staff are available for assistance if required. The Scotch Whisky Shop 12

13 The Scotch Whisky Shop, as seen from our mezzanine level Additional Information Staff are currently participating in the accessibility training offered by VisitScotland. In addition, some of our senior members of staff have received further accessibility training. Information in large print is available upon request. There are fire action notices at each fire alarm call point which detail what to do in case of an evacuation. In case of an evacuation all customers inside the Scotch Whisky Experience will be led to safety by a member of the team. We welcome assistance dogs at the Scotch Whisky Experience and can provide water bowls for them. Please ask staff for assistance. Signage throughout the building is created with black text on a white background. Font size varies, and pictograms are used where useful. We do not have an area where a wheelchair or mobility scooter can be charged. Details of local accommodation and their access statements are available through Please refer to Euan s Guide for local services for disabled people. 13

14 Future Plans Every year the Scotch Whisky Experience identifies low-season projects to be completed in January and February. This year we have committed to translating our tour into sign language and installing these videos on ipads to improve the experience for our hard of hearing customers. We will also be looking at improving accessibility throughout the business for all customers, including those with disabilities, children and foreign language speakers. Feedback We are always looking for ways to improve the service we provide our visitors, so please contact us if you have any comments or suggestions about this access statement or anything else that you think can improve your visit to us. Contact Information Address: The Scotch Whisky Experience 354 Castlehill The Royal Mile Edinburgh EH1 2NE Telephone: Fax: Website: Twitter: Scotch Whisky Scotch Whisky Amber Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/scotchwhiskyexperience Grid Reference: NT Hours of Operation: Standard Tour Hours - 10am to 5.30pm (Platinum tour 5.45pm) Local Accessible Taxi: City Cabs Local Public Transport: 14

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