UK Theatre's Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2018

UK Theatre's Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2018

Hull Truck Theatre are in the running for UK Theatre’s Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2018, having last won the regional award in 2016 for Yorkshire and the Humber.

The winner of this year’s award will be decided by a public vote between Tuesday 7 August at noon and 12:00 on Tuesday 18 September 2018. Voters will be entered in to a prize draw to win £250 worth of Theatre Tokens. Votes can be cast here.

During our Year of Exceptional Drama as a lead partner in Hull UK City of Culture 2017, we experienced an unprecedented growth in audience and community engagement. No less than 88,376 people saw our work in Hull, 45% of whom were first time bookers. We attracted audiences from 97% of all UK postcode areas, and 20,669 people saw our work on tour around the country. 2610 people of all ages participated in workshops, discover events and inclusion groups, while 5000 people from our local community took part in our Community Dialogues project.

Exceptional customer service is at the core of what we do, and we are committed to opening up access to all aspects of the theatre. In July 2018 we released an online access case study that outlines the steps that we have taken to improve online access. All Hull Truck Theatre productions include Relaxed, Audio Described, and Captioned performances, and all our staff have dementia awareness training.

We strive to make every visit to Hull Truck Theatre a positive experience for all visitors. We are a breastfeeding friendly organisation as part of the Breastfeeding Friendly Premises Award Scheme, therefore parents are welcome to breastfeed, bottle feed or express on the premises, and Hull Truck Theatre have been specially trained to offer parents any support they may need. We also have a dedicated on-site Family Play Area and regularly hold free Family Open Days. Our most recent Family Open Day attracted 469 visitors.

As of 1 August, we have partnered with award-winning Hull based street food caterers Shoot The Bull to provide both theatre audiences and the general public with a whole new range of high quality dining opportunities. 

The Most Welcoming Theatre Award is an opportunity for audiences to celebrate their local theatre and all they do for their communities. The overall winner of the award will be announced at the UK Theatre Awards on Sunday 14 October.

The UK Theatre Awards are the only nationwide Awards to honour outstanding achievement in theatre throughout the United Kingdom. This year's ceremony will again take place at London's historic Guildhall, on Sunday 14 October 2018. 

The UK Theatre Awards are sponsored by Harbottle and Lewis, White Light, Theatre Tokens, Q-Park, John Good and Integro in association with Chubb.   

Ruth Puckering, Interim Executive Director at Hull Truck Theatre, says:

“Our mission is to build strong relationships with audiences and be a welcoming home for our communities, especially those visiting for the first time and who might experience barriers to attending the theatre. Through our work on stage and creative learning activities we tell powerful human stories that reflect a modern Britain and are continually working to improve accessibility in order to welcome as many diverse audiences and participants as possible.”

Some of the feedback we received in 2018 was:

“I brought an elderly lady with severe learning difficulties to see Oliver this afternoon and could not have been more impressed with the gentleman front of house who assisted us to our seats, popped to the foyer to get her an Ice cream during the interval and returned her walking frame promptly at the end of the show. This was the best experience I have ever had while supporting this lady on outings. Thank you so much!”

“I really can’t thank the staff at Hull Truck enough. On the Friday before Christmas we came to see A Christmas Carol and my daughter who has ASD and ADHD couldn’t cope with the crowd, where we was sat. We left our seating before the show started. The staff offered all sort to help the situation but on that particular day the best thing for my daughter was for her to go home. The manager arranged for us to transfer the tickets to the relaxed performance on the 6th of January. They even allowed us to use the 2 seats in a row of its own. We are sat here waiting for the show to begin and my daughter is quite relaxed. We have a planned escape route if it gets too much but she seems really relaxed. Thank you for your understanding and kindness Hull Truck.”