Deadline to Improve Access for People with Disabilities


9 December 2003

BSI offers workshops and best practice guidelines

People with disabilities should witness a marked improvement in their access to commercial buildings next year, when the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA)* comes fully into force. All organisations providing goods, facilities or services to the public must make reasonable adjustments to overcome physical barriers, which deny access to people with disabilities by October 2004.

Through a series of one-day workshops beginning in February 2004 and taking place throughout the year at various locations in the UK, BSI Business Information will help architects and facilities managers understand and examine the implications of the DDA. They will also describe how British Standard BS 8300:2001, Design of buildings and their approaches to meet the needs of disabled people - Code of practice, can provide the best approach towards compliance.

Although the DDA does not prescribe what constitutes a reasonable adjustment,

BS 8300:2001 provides a source of best practice guidelines and recommendations, setting out detailed access solutions for a range of disabilities in a variety of settings.

David Williams, Head of Construction for BSI Business Information and British Standards, says: "With less than a year to go to the October 2004 deadline, I would strongly recommend businesses address the issue of disabled access if they have not already done so. Rather than being a hindrance to business this legislation should help companies widen their customer base."

BS 8300:2001 applies to building design, but more importantly provides recommendations for assessing accessibility and usability of existing buildings, and, where practicable, as a basis for improvement. Improvements are not restricted to building access, but also include introducing additional features such as grab rails, touch legible signs, hearing enhancement systems and disabled parking facilities.

Businesses often assume that providing disabled access to a building is limited to putting in a ramp for wheelchair users. It also involves accommodating people whose vision or hearing is impaired, by for example, installing a fire alarm that is both audible and visible.

David Williams adds: "Businesses should not assume that substantial infra-structural change will be required. In some cases, putting in place effective management and maintenance policies to create safer access for people with disabilities to existing facilities may suffice. Businesses should consider using BS 8300:2001 for guidance on how to approach meeting the needs of people with disabilities."

*Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (DDA), Part III, Access to Goods, Facilities and Services.


For more information please contact:

Wilma Tulloch on +44 (0)20 8996 6330 OR
Marc Edney on +44 (0)20 8996 6330

Who should attend?

Anyone responsible for designing or maintaining buildings will find this course invaluable. Architects and facilities managers, for example, will learn how the rights in the Disability Discrimination Act relate to the standards in BS 8300 and how the latter can be used to find reasonable adjustments required under the former. Indeed anyone, who wants to know more about practical ways of making their organisation more accessible to disabled people, will benefit from this course.


  • Disability Discrimination Act
    -background and overview
    -importance of reasonable adjustments
    -difference between rights and standards  
  • BS 8300

  • -background
    -building types

  • Problems facing disabled people in built environments

  • - typical examples, involving a range of impairments

  • Case Studies

  • - using BS 8300 to identify solutions to problems

  • Discussion & Questions arising from case studies
  • Conclusion & Look Forward to future changes in the law, including

  • - draft DDA amendment Bill
    -revision of Part M




    Venues and Dates 2004


    Dates 2004

    Central London

    12 February

    Central London

    26 February


    11 March

    Milton Keynes

    16 March

    Central London

    25 March


    1 April


    20 April

    Milton Keynes

    29 April

    £240.00+ VAT - BSI Subscribing Members

    Members of the following trade associations RIAS, BIAT, ICES, RIBA, CIBSE, CIOB, RICS, BIFM, RTPI, IHEEM, ALG, The Chartered Society of Designers can get a 20% discount if they book before 30th January 2004. The BSI Subscribing Member rate applies.

    £300.00+ VAT - Non Members

    Special prices are available to those who are registered disabled. Please contact BSI Customer Services on +44 (0) 20 8996 9001 for more details.