UK campaigners improve access to music for people with learning disabilities

A UK organisation is working to improve the lives of people with learning conditions through live music and events.

The group, called Gig Buddies Scotland, matches volunteers with music fans who need help attending gigs.

It all started with 22-year-old Samuel Maggs, who began taking his friend with learning disabilities to gigs over six months ago.

“Some people need another person with them at all times,” said Mr Maggs.

“Otherwise they can’t get out at events that they really have a passion for.

“She needs one on one support as she can be very anxious using things like public transport. It helps people get to places.

“Seeing her every month is a highlight.”

Mr Maggs, who is a musician himself, said venues would benefit financially by improving access to music fans with disabilities.

“People with additional support needs don’t necessarily like different things to you. They want to come along to these gigs and they are another consumer base for venues.”

“We aim to help people with conditions such as autism, Down’s syndrome or anyone with mixed additional support needs,” Mr Maggs added.

“It’s a blanket term as we don’t want to exclude anyone.”