Access for All

For an accessible and inclusive Mercury

We believe theatre and all of the activities and services we offer should be accessible to all! So we have gathered all the information you might need in one place to make sure you have an excellent time with us whether you are visiting to see a show, attending a workshop or just meeting a pal for a coffee.

Our customer experience team are a friendly bunch who have regular access training and act on any feedback from you, our audience members. If you have any worries or concerns before your visit, please feel free to get in touch.

They can speak to you over the phone (01206 573948), by text phone (01206 245518), by email or in person and give you any information you need. We are also happy to arrange a tour or send you a Social Story before your visit to put your mind at rest.

Our shows sometimes include flashing lights and loud noises and we will list any warnings on the event pages. We also provide free earplugs if you need them, just visit the box office or the ground floor bar before the show to pick them up.

View accessible listings

Booking information and concessions

Our building is currently closed due to ongoing refurbishment and government restrictions.

However, our customer experience team are still here to chat or to talk you through our upcoming online events! You can call them on 01206 573948 between 11am – 3pm, Tuesday – Saturday.

We do offer concessions for disabled and D/deaf people – however these vary from show to show. If you are booking for a Mercury Production in the main theatre we offer a £5 discount off all ticket bands, or if you require a companion/carer ticket you are entitled to a free ticket when you purchase a full price ticket.

To book online and make us aware of your needs we recommend joining our Access For All Scheme (details below), the information you provide us will mean any discounts are applied automatically. 

Access For All Scheme

Our free Access For All scheme will allow you to keep us up to date with your needs as well as ensuring you can book tickets and parking online and receive any discounts available.

As an Access For All member you’ll receive the following benefits:

  • A welcome email explaining how to book your tickets
  • A dedicated newsletter
  • Online access to the best seats to meet your needs including seats in our accessible viewing areas
  • Book advance parking tickets in our dedicated accessible parking area
  • Automatic discounts and free tickets for those that need a companion or PA 
  • Regular check ins with our Customer Experience team to check you’re enjoying your visits

If you already have an online account with us you can join this scheme by logging in to your account and clicking through to the Other Preferences’ tab. Once you’re there tick the ‘I’d like to join the Access for All scheme’ box and all the access requirement boxes relevant to you.

Login and update your preferences

Register for an account

If you don’t have an account with us then click the button below, you will then be asked fill in your details. When you reach the ‘Other Preferences’ section please tick the ‘I’d like to join the Access for All scheme’ box and all the access requirement boxes relevant to you.

Join Now

How to book online

To receive any discounts, book accessible parking and to book seats in our accessible viewing areas you will need to be logged into your account before you begin the booking process. Here’s a little how to guide to make sure booking is as simple as possible for you.

  1. Click the ‘Login’ button on the top right of the website homepage, follow the instructions and login to your account.
  2. Once you are logged in click the ‘What’s On?’ button on the top left of the website. Have a look through our upcoming events and click on the event you’d like to buy a ticket for.
  3. Once you are on the event page, choose the performance you’d like to go to and click the ‘Book Tickets’ button.
  4. You will now be on a page with a seating plan, so now it’s time to choose where you’d like to sit. If you require a seat in the accessible viewing areas you will need to have ticked the “I would like to book wheelchair positions online” box when joining the Access for All scheme, if you hadn’t done this, no worries, just go back to your account by clicking the button on the top right and you’ll be able to amend this in the ‘Other Preferences’ tab.
  5. Once you have selected the seats you want press the ‘Continue’ button.
  6. You will now need to select the ticket type, in order to receive the relevant concessions please select the ticket type relevant to you and your party. For example, if you have a visual impairment and require a companion/carer, select one ticket as ‘Disabled Person‘ and one as ‘Companion or Carer‘ then press ‘Continue’. (To receive a free companion/carer ticket you will have needed to have ticked the ‘I require a Personal Assistant/Companion‘ box when updating your preferences.)
  7. You will have now reached our Basket page, on this page, if you have ticked the ‘I would like the option to book access parking‘ box, there will be a section offering our Accessible Parking, if you’d like to book a space, click the link, then the ‘Book Now’ button and you’ll be able to add this to your basket.
  8. At this point you have the option to ‘Checkout’ and finalise your order, or if you fancy booking tickets for another show you can click the ‘Continue Browsing’ button and head back to our ‘What’s On?‘ page.

And there you have it, that’s you all booked in for your next exciting theatre trip! However, if you do come across any issues, or would like a helping hand, feel free to give our Customer Experience team a call on 01206 573948.

Book Now

Wheelchair users

We can seat up to six wheelchair users in the main theatre and two in our studio, with additional spaces available for specialised performances.

Both of our auditoriums have tiered seating, so if you need step-free access do book a space in our accessible viewing areas, or if you can and would prefer to transfer, please book the aisle seats in Row J.

Our friendly team can also provide drinks, snacks and ice creams to buy for the interval delivered to your seat.

We now have two lifts positioned on each side of the building and accessible toilets on each floor. There are lowered counters in both the box office and the bars to enable customers to collect tickets and buy drinks with ease. We are happy to also provide table service if you would like. Just make us aware when you order or pre-book online

If you are joining us for a workshop, rehearsal or meeting there is an additional lift at Stage Door at the rear of the building visiting each floor.

Access by car

Accessible parking

We now have five accessible parking spaces available outside the Theatre and these must be booked in advance

You can book a space online whilst buying your tickets if you are signed up to our Access For All scheme, over the phone or in person.

There are now more spaces for blue badge holders in St Mary’s Car Park directly next to the exit. There is level access and good lighting to leave the car park across the bridge and when you arrive at Balkerne Gate.  

Please note there is no parking for standard or blue badge holders around the theatre or within Balkerne Gate. 

Drop off/pick up point

There is a drop off point directly in front of the box office and the Jumbo Water Tower for safe transfer. 

When you are ready to leave our Customer Experience staff would be happy to call you a taxi. There is a safe comfortable space to wait in the box office area with level access to the pickup area. 

Access in the theatre

Accessible toilets and changing facilities

We have accessible toilets on the ground and first floor front of house and then other loos on each floor adjacent to our rehearsal spaces, meeting rooms and offices. 

We have a changing hoist available for use. Sadly, due to space limitations and planning constraints it was not possible to build a Changing Places facility. However, we do have a hoist available in an adapted dressing room. Do ask a member of our Customer Experience team and they would be happy to help. Please allow time to move within the building to access this facility, especially at busy times. 

In addition, we have two accessible showers and further changing facilities and dressing rooms available backstage if needed.

Assistance dogs

We welcome Assistance Dogs at all performances and it’d be great if you could let us know if you’ll be bringing an assistance dog in your Access For All scheme settings or by giving us a call so we can be prepared for your visit.

Your dog can join you for the show or be well looked after by our Customer Experience team – we’ll also provide water bowls if needed!

Assisted listening

An assisted listening system is available in our main theatre and studio space for all performances. Our system is suitable for use with or without a hearing aid. This can be booked online, over the phone or in person, free of charge and we can also take calls using Text Phone systems. The headsets will be available for collection from the Cloakroom.

We also have induction loops at the box office, in the bar and all rehearsal and meeting rooms including the creative engagement studio.

Breakout space

If you or a member of your party ever need a breakout space, then do please ask a member of our Customer Experience team who will be only too pleased to help and show you where to go to relax.

Additional support

We have a range of other support and equipment available if ever you need it. Don’t worry if you run out or have forgotten your own, we’ll more than likely have what you need. This might include a manual wheelchair, blankets, noise reducing headphones, paper straws, towels, additional cushions or seat risers.

Access performance listings:

Explore

Accessible performances

Ten actors in colourful costumes, posed in an arrowhead formation, each raising a fist in the air.

Audio described performances

Audio described performances give you a live commentary about the action happening on stage through a pair of headphones. Please choose our “Audio Description” ticket type when booking if you would like to use this service.

We also run Touch Tours before each audio described performance, meaning you can explore the stage, set and costumes before the show starts. These tours are free but need to be booked in advance.

Seven performers with violins, guitars, and an accordion on stage

Captioned performances

If you find it difficult to hear what is being said on stage or can’t quite catch all of the lyrics to a song then a captioned performance might be for you. Captioning converts the spoken word, songs and sounds into text on a caption unit on the stage. We change our seating plans for these shows so you can work out the best view for you if booking online. If you’d like to use this service please choose the ‘Captioned’ ticket type when booking.

Captioned performances can now be available in both or main house, studio and for selected events and talks throughout the year.

Two actors, mid-performance, one pointing towards the front of the stage

BSL performances

BSL interpreted performances are specifically designed for d/Deaf and hard of hearing people that communicate using sign language. Throughout the show an interpreter will stand in a spotlight, without blocking the actors on stage. They will communicate the spoken, sung and heard elements of the performance by signing throughout the show. As with captioned performances we change our seating plans for these shows so you can work out the best view for you when booking online. If you’d like to use this service please choose the ‘BSL’ ticket type when booking.

Four actors mid-performance sat on a bench

Relaxed performances

Relaxed performances are for anyone who would benefit from seeing a show in a more relaxed environment. They are specifically designed to welcome people with Autism, a learning disability, sensory and communication disorders or Dementia to the theatre to experience a live performance with their families.

These shows have a less formal and more supportive atmosphere to ease any worries. You are able to come and go as you please throughout the performance and make noise if you want to. Lighting, special effects and loud noises will be slightly altered, however the main storyline won’t change.

A stage full of actors, mid performance

Social stories

Our social stories give you an idea of what it will be like to visit the Mercury. It has lots of pictures of the building and shows you what you might see during your visit.

For shows with Relaxed Performances we also produce a show-specific social story that we email to everyone before the performance. You can also download them here or on the show page (they’re usually ready a week before the show).

Audio and large print brochures

We also offer our brochure in large print and audio formats. These will be available to listen to or download here as soon as we release our next brochure. You can also request an audio or large print brochure when signing up to our Access For All scheme and we’ll post these to you each time we release a new one.

Young People with SEND

 

action for children logo

Thanks to the funding we receive from Action for Children, we run a variety of activities for people aged 18 and under with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). These events are either free or discounted for those with short breaks passports. If you live in Essex and your child has a disability, click the button below to apply for a passport number and join in the fun!

Register for Short Breaks

Check out our SEND activities

Feedback

Please let us know about your experience of using our access facilities and support at the Mercury. Our team are always seeking to improve the service they offer. 

You can give feedback during your visit or contact our team by calling them on 01206 573948 or emailing tickets@mercurytheatre.co.uk

We look forward to welcoming you to the Mercury.

Access performance listings:

Explore