Edinburgh Zoo hosts accessible event for people with special needs

Edinburgh Zoo - Lanterns November 2019 © Stewart Attwood RZSS Media

Edinburgh Zoo’s Giant Lanterns exhibition will be hosting a special Quiet Night tonight.

The Quiet Night is a one-off event that aims to make the lanterns more accessible to people with special needs, such as those on the ASD spectrum or those with mobility issues.

Bruce Ritchie, Head of Visitor Experience at the zoo, said that  the Quiet Night is specifically “aimed at people who may have additional support needs.”

The volume of the music will be lowered and the zoo’s mobility vehicle will also be available for use to those who need it.

A smaller number of visitors will be attending, allowing for people with limited mobility and those who have a difficult time around crowds to enjoy the lanterns.

Ritchie said: “Our Quiet Nights form part of our ongoing commitment to ensure all of our customers have the best possible experience while visiting Edinburgh Zoo”.

This year’s theme for the exhibition is ‘Lost Worlds’, meaning that the focus is on dinosaurs and other now-extinct species that once roamed the Earth. Many different species of dinosaur are represented at the event, including the Tyrannosaurus Rex (or T-rex) and the Pachycephalosaurus.

By showcasing some of the extinct animals that used to live on our planet, the zoo hopes to raise awareness for the species that are currently in danger of meeting the same fate.

Edinburgh Zoo partnered with PAMIS Scotland to put on the Quiet Night to increase the Giant Lanterns exhibition’s accessibility. PAMIS (Promoting a More Inclusive Society) works with disabled people and their families and helps to provide them with more opportunities.

This kind of event ensures that the zoo can accommodate as many people as possible.

Edinburgh Zoo – Lanterns November 2019 © Stewart Attwood RZSS Media

Giant Lanterns is Scotland’s only festival featuring Chinese lanterns. By ensuring that people with special needs are able to visit the exhibition, the zoo ensures that this unique festival is an experience everyone can share.

The Giant Lanterns exhibition will remain available until the 26th of January 2020. The Quiet Night will be exclusively tonight.