We have deliberately set out at Rosslyn Court to make our venue as accessible as we can and to ensure the variety of folk music we promote is as inclusive as possible. Below are notes about the steps we have taken to promote inclusivity in the different protected areas.
Sex, Gender and Sexuality
Although folk music in the UK has been traditionally a largely male province, we ensure we feature an equal number of male and female singers and we take special steps to ensure all performers coming to us are looked after well and offered safe accommodation. Similarly we work actively to make sure that our venue is a safe space for female audience members and that any issues of harassment are immediately addressed.
We have also worked hard to make sure gay, lesbian and trans people feel totally welcomed and to book a significant number of artists whose performances actively challenges hetero- and gender-normality.
Race and Ethnicity
English folk music can seem exclusively white. Black and minority songs rarely figure the English folk canon, the international and minority roots of much of English folk music and of folk instrumentation is overlooked, and music reflecting minority experience has not been fostered in the tradition. We aim to counter this by ensuring folk musicians of colour and of other heritages – whether English or international - are well represented in our billing and by booking musicians who are exploring the Black and minority heritage and composing new work to address these issues. Our audiences are multi-ethnic and multi-racial and we work had to ensure that everyone in our audiences feels welcomed and acknowledged.
As we are fortunate enough to own our venue, we have set out to make it disabled friendly, in line with the social model of disability which places the responsibility on us to make proactive adjustments rather than expecting disabled people to take the lead. We have level access and a disabled toilet; Blue Badge holders can park directly outside. Patrons who are hard of hearing are supported by our insistence that all performers use PA and we have a personal hearing loop available for anyone needing it. We have extensive experience of supporting people with hidden disabilities, especially ASDs and mental health issues and we will make appropriate adjustments for them on request. We are pleased that we have had a number of disabled performers who have played here and have happily returned. All our performances are live-streamed and freely available online so those unable to join us because they are immuno-compromised, unable to travel, or otherwise cannot tolerate busy venues can still be fully involved. See below for concessions; if a disabled person requires a personal assistant to enable them to attend, the attendant may be admitted free of charge.
Age, Class, Faith and Belief
We are aware that certain groups may be unable to afford standard price tickets, so half-price tickets are freely available on a trust basis – if you feel you cannot afford a full-price ticket, just request a half-price one. We are open to the expression of all forms of tolerant and inclusive religious faith within performances and welcome singers whose work has a spiritual content. Although we are aware that there are strong political convictions underlying much folk music, we encourage all performers to express this in a constructive and inclusive way so that everyone can feel that a range of opinions are respected and welcomed. We also work to ensure our performers include people across the whole adult age range. We welcome people bringing their children. We understand babies need to be breast-fed during events and will positively support this; private spaces and baby changing facilities are also available.
Harassment and Hate Speech
We reserve the right to ask anyone whose behaviour might reasonably lead other to feel uncomfortable to desist from so behaving or to leave, as appropriate. We feel it is particularly important that we work to create a safe space for all and that it is not just left to members of the protected groups to call out poor behaviour and challenge discrimination.