Two visitors explore the Chelsea Physic Garden. A women wearing a backpack, is partially hidden by a blossoming bush; a man behind her steps down the path, under a pink flowering tree. 

What’s On & Online 26th August 2021

Welcome to What’s On & Online for Thursday 26th August, VocalEyes’ weekly listings of accessible arts and culture. Have a lovely bank holiday weekend.

Chelsea Physic Garden research: final chance to participate

The University of Westminster is running an online research project about an inclusive
online tour of the Chelsea Physic Garden. The study is still open until the end of August and we would really appreciate it if anyone can take part.

Nestled in the heart of London, next to the River Thames, the Chelsea Physic Garden has been an important site for plant collections since 1673. Today, it is a place to relax and unwind in nature as well as to explore the history of London’s oldest botanic garden. With Covid-19 impacting on our ability to visit historic gardens in person, the University of Westminster wanted to explore ways to bring the Chelsea Physic Garden to people at home.

They have created an inclusive video tour which introduces you to the delights that this unique heritage site has to offer. By taking part in the study, you will provide invaluable feedback to help develop engaging and inclusive online tours.

The study takes approximately 45 minutes in total.  You can choose to be entered into a prize draw to win a £200 Amazon voucher, upon completion of the study.

Click here to take part in the study.

If you would like to take part, but would prefer to give your questionnaire responses over
Zoom rather than online, please contact [email protected]


What’s On

Greenwich + Docklands International Festival (GDIF)

This year’s festival takes place from Friday 27th August to Saturday 11th September 2021.

Putting outdoor arts centre-stage as never before, marking our emergence from the pandemic with productions that celebrate our reconnection with the natural world, tell diverse and compelling stories, and bring the GDIF experience to your doorstep. Details of audio described performances below. All access information available on the GDIF website.

Mystery Bird, audio described. Wednesday 1st September, 8:30pm. Free

This is a promenade piece roaming through the streets of Plumstead and Charlton.

Dance City at Columbus Courtyard, Canary Wharf, audio described. Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th September, 1pm. Free

Future Cargo at Pontoon Dock, audio described. Saturday 4th September, 8pm. Touch tour 7:15pm. Free

Blue Hills Remembered at Abbey Wood Station, audio described. Wednesday 8th September, 7:30pm. Touch tour 6:30pm. Tickets £10 concessions, £15 full price

Balsam at Woolwich Works, audio described. Thursday 9th September, 8:30pm. Touch tour 7:30pm. Tickets £10 concessions, £15 full price.

Healing Together at Royal Victoria Gardens, audio described. Saturday 11th September, 1pm. Free


RIBA – Open Space – Creative Workshop: Experiencing Space – Architecture at the RIBASaturday 4th September 10am – 12pm.

Free event for blind and partially sighted children and their families. Booking essential.

Join the RIBA and DisOrdinary Architecture Project for a creative workshop where you will explore and experience architecture.

The RIBA headquarters is full of large and small spaces made with different materials. Feel, see, smell and hear what the historic building is like and create your own ‘word picture’ in response.

To book your free space please email Wilson Yau at [email protected]

Amélie The Musical at Criterion Theatre, London, audio described. Saturday 11th September, 2:30pm. Tickets £20

Experience this beautiful story and be inspired by this imaginative dreamer who discovers her voice, uncovers the power of human connection and sees possibility around every corner.

Book by phone on 0207 839 8811 or email [email protected]

Sneakers Unboxed: From Studio to Street Multisensory Tour at The Design Museum, audio described. Saturday 11th September, 10am. Free but booking required

Your guide Andrew Mashigo will give an insight into the cultural history of sneakers, including the most iconic and sought-after pairs.

Book tickets online, phone 0203 862 5900 or email [email protected]

Van Gogh Alive at Kensington Gardens, audio described tours. Sunday 12th September, 12noon, 2pm and 4pm. Monday 13th September, 3pm. Tickets: £24

Step inside Van Gogh’s masterpieces and feel their power at this immersive multi-sensory experience. Set to an evocative classical score, a thrilling display of over 3,000 inspirational images transforms every surface that surrounds you. Hosted within a stunning, 25,000 square foot purpose-built venue in Kensington Gardens, just opposite the Royal Albert Hall. Lots of information about your visit and background to Van Gogh in the audio guideBook tickets online or email [email protected]

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast at Bristol Hippodrome, audio described. Thursday 16th September, 7:30pm. Tickets from £20

This most enchanted musical returns to the UK stage in 2021. re-imagined using the latest theatrical innovations, this beloved ‘tale as old as time’ will be brought to life on stage with all the charm and elegance audiences expect from Belle and her Beast.

Book by phone on 0333 009 5399 or email [email protected]

Find more events on Vocaleyes website.

Outdoor events

Museums, galleries and heritage venues events

Audio-described performance events


What’s Online

Find online events on Vocaleyes website

Livestream: Statements after an Arrest under the Immorality Act from Orange Tree Theatre, audio described. Friday 24th September, 7:30pm. Tickets from £25

Frieda and Errol meet in darkness. Theirs is a love story that can never thrive in the light.

A relationship interrupted, by white supremacist law.

And then at the end as at the beginning, they will find you again.

Book tickets on Orange Tree Theatre’s website, by phone on 020 8940 3633 or email [email protected]

Sadler’s Wells: Company of Elders – Relive, audio described. YouTube 5 mins.

What does it mean to relive a memory? This poignant short dance film looks at how the process of reliving memories and experiences can tell a story of what matters most in life: the people we share it with. A yearn for human connection.

Scottish Opera On Screen: L’elisir d’amore 2021, audio described. YouTube 2 hours 18 mins.

Love blooms in this spirited new telling of Donizetti’s evergreen rom-com.


AD on BBC iPlayer

Here are some programmes and series from BBC iPlayer to enjoy over a long weekend!

Armando’s Tales of Charles Dickens

Armando Iannucci looks beyond the stature of Dickens as a national institution and instead explores the qualities of his work that make him one of the best British writers.

The Bat Man of Mexico

David Attenborough narrates the story of Rodrigo Medellin, Mexico’s very own ‘Bat Man’, who has dedicated his life to saving bats.

Expedition Volcano

Chris Jackson, Xand Van Tulleken and Aldo Kane take part in an extraordinary expedition to one of the world’s most dangerous, spectacular and least known volcanoes.

Handmade on the Silk Road

A series about traditional crafts along the ancient trade route of the Silk Road. Each film follows a day in the working life of a weaver, woodcarver and potter in China, Uzbekistan and Iran.

Home is where the Art is

Nick Knowles challenges artists to create artworks for people they’ve never met.

The Last Days of Anne Boleyn

Writers and historians including Hilary Mantel and Philippa Gregory revisit the last days of Anne Boleyn, who in 1536 became the first queen in British history to be executed.

Sacred Wonders

Find out what people do for faith in the most spectacular sacred places on the planet.

1066: A Year to Conquer England

Drama-documentary series. Dan Snow explores the political intrigues and family betrayals between the Vikings, Anglo-Saxons and Normans that led to war.


Image description: Two visitors explore the Chelsea Physic Garden. A women wearing a backpack, is partially hidden by a blossoming bush; a man behind her steps down the path, under a pink flowering tree.