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#HearingLossHour: Accessibility, hearing loss and the Arts


Facilitated by one of our Hearing Like Me bloggers, and supported by Phonak, #Hearinglosshour, is one hour a month devoted to discussions about living with hearing loss. It takes place in real time between 1pm and 2pm (GMT) on the first Wednesday of the month.

On 7th December 2016, it was the last #hearinglosshour (Twitter networking hour) of the year. The theme was ‘Accessibility, the theatre, cinema and the Arts’. It was a busy hour with lots of people and businesses taking part. If you missed it, don’t worry, we have a summary of the hour lined up for you.

December’s Questions

The questions posted during the hour were as follows:


Understandably, as participants came from a wide range of locations in the UK and US – and because everyone’s needs cannot be met in the same way – satisfaction with the way in which individual’s access needs were met, varied widely. Participants were keen to share the contact details of their favourite accessible venues, and some of the social media officers from those venues also took part in the hour. 


Some people said they had stopped going to the theatre and/or cinema as a result of their hearing loss. However, many other people shared positive experiences.

All manner of things was discussed in terms of accessibility: hearing loops, infrared, Stagetext, campaigning/petitions, subtitle glasses, rear window captioning, and subtitle apps on mobile phones.


In the UK, Stagetext’s live captioning in theatres was very popular amongst our tweeters. The charity also participated in the hour and shared information and links to forthcoming Stagetext-supported performances.

You can check out the tweets via our Storify summary.

Further information

Captionfish (US)

Captionfish is a search engine for open captioned, Rear Window®, USL, CaptiView®, foreign/subtitled, and descriptively-narrated movies. If you’re in the US, you can search for an accessible movie performance near you.

Your Local Cinema (UK)

Your Local Cinema is a search engine for captioned, foreign/subtitled, and audio-described movies being screened in the UK.

Stagetext (UK)

Stagetext is a registered charity in the UK, which provides captioning and live subtitling services to theatres and other arts venues to make their activities accessible to people who are deaf, deafened or hard of hearing. It was established in May 2000 by Peter Pullan, Merfyn Williams and Geoff Brown, each of whom had varying types of deafness and a determination to improve access to the performing arts for all deaf, deafened and hard of hearing people. Stagetext is a regularly funded organisation of Arts Council England.

 UK Petition

My fight to make cinemas deaf-friendly

Author Details
Phonak hEARo, Angie is a freelance journalist and content writer. Angie was diagnosed with Otosclerosis in her right ear at the age of 30. In 2011, she suffered sudden profound hearing loss in her left ear. She uses a Phonak CROS II with a Phonak Audéo V hearing aid. You can follow Angie on Twitter @hearinglosshour and join in #HearingLossHour on the first Tuesday of the month.