Making time to spend with your family is a hard thing to do in today’s busy world. There are so many pressures on families and how they spend their leisure time, making time spent together precious.
With this in mind, it is important that we understand what we can do, as cultural organisations, to make every family visit a fantastic experience; to be family friendly. We have put together a list of ideas to help make your venue family friendly. This includes a list of top tips from the Audience Agency, an arts focused organisation which provides research and consultation for museums and galleries.
What can you do to be family friendly?
- Families come in different shapes and sizes and museums and galleries should reflect this by providing stimulating experiences for each individual within a family group. From grandparents, to teenagers, to young parents and toddlers, all should feel welcome and enjoy their visit as a group.
- Provide clear information about what’s on offer. Tell families about the whole family offer as each family has different needs.
- Provide activities which appeal to a range of different people, so that all members of the family can enjoy their visit.
- Offer flexible tickets as family groups are all different.
- Small changes such as providing baby changing facilities in all toilets, including the men’s toilets, can make a huge difference.
- Make your family offer clear on the website. Families are busy and need reminding of what activities and events are coming up. This can be done through newsletters, your website and through social media.
- Don’t stereotype older people within the family group. There are barriers to older people getting involved too, for example, those living with Dementia.
Top Tips from the Audience Agency
- Provide intergenerational events and activities
- Provide for extended family groups. Not all families visit with Mum, Dad and two or three children.
- Provide families with a long term and meaningful conversation. This can be done through social media.
- Be dynamic about how you engage with families, as family groups alter over time.
- Families look for a consistent and regular offer. There is less risk for a family if they have been somewhere before and enjoyed their visit. They know what to expect.
- Empower your staff to put families at the heart of your business.
Family Arts Campaign issue the Family Arts Standards, which Lakeland Arts have signed up to. These standards provide guidelines for cultural venues, to ensure that museum and gallery services are great for families. Look out for the blue plaques which will be on display at Blackwell, Abbot Hall and the Museum of Lakeland Life and Industry.
Tell us about your family visit