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WOS Radio: Stars lend voices to bring London landmarks to life for the blind

By • West End
Actors including Derek Jacobi, Mark Rylance, Alison Steadman, Steven Berkoff and Barbara Windsor have leant their distinctive voices to a new initiative to make London landmarks more accessible to blind people.

The scheme, called London Beyond Sight, has been launched by the charity VocalEyes, which champions access to culture for blind and partially sighted people.

Through audio descriptions, London Beyond Sight opens up an array of London landmarks, from acknowledged attractions to the more obscure, individually chosen by celebrities.

Others taking part in the scheme include former cricketer Mike Gatting, politician Lord Low of Dalston, Radio 1 DJ Rob da Bank and Baroness Neuberger DBE, Senior Rabbi to the West London Synagogue, her chosen landmark.

Some 20 London landmarks can currently be found on the website, with "significantly more" being added over the coming months.

They include Mark Rylance describing the 'Groundling Gates' at the Globe, Steven Berkoff describing The Shard, Barbara Windsor on the Theatre Royal, Stratford East and Derek Jacobi giving a personal insight on the Old Vic, where he made his name working under Laurence Olivier (listen below).

Judy Dixey, director of VocalEyes said: "Thanks to the involvement of the generous celebrities, a new accessible element has been added to the treasures of London for blind and partially sighted people to experience and enjoy the culture, architecture and hidden gems of England's capital city in a new way. Of course, it is open for all to view."

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