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January 18, 2006

BBC Birmingham hosts first Deaf tour

From: BID - Jan 18, 2006

Press Release

BBC Midlands Today organise studio tour for Deaf Community

The BBC Midlands Today studio at the Mailbox, Birmingham will be opened up to members of the Deaf community.

The BBC has organised similar visits to BBC Birmingham, but this is the first ‘Deaf’ tour that has been conducted. The tour is the result of a partnership between BID Services with Deaf People and BBC staff who have worked together to set the proper facilities and support mechanisms in place.

Paul Elvins, Information Manager for BID believes the event will be a very positive experience;

“There are a lot of Deaf young people who have a real enthusiasm for television and are interested in pursuing careers in the medium. Programmes like See Hear have played a big part in developing this interest as generations of Deaf people have grown up watching them and they show TV is not just for the hearing world.

This event will demonstrate the types of career options that are available in TV and give people with a genuine interest the chance to see exactly what goes on behind the scenes of a major regional broadcast.”

Sue Beardsmore, former presenter of Midlands Today, went on to say:

“We want to be able to show people exactly what it takes to produce the programme and all the hard work that goes into it. This will give the people who attend an idea of what it takes to work in the business.

Deaf people’s access to media facilities is quite limited in the midlands and we wanted to open up the BBC to Deaf people.

We are hoping that this event will be educational, fun and will encourage some of the young Deaf people to follow in the footsteps of the current generation of Deaf media professionals.”

The tour of the BBC studios will take place on the 18th January and is already fully booked as the demand for tickets was so high.

For more on this story, or to arrange an interview please contact:

Anthony Beeby
Campaigns Manager, BID Services with Deaf People
Ladywood Road
B16 8SZ

Tel: (0121) 246 6188

Notes to Editors:
About BID Services with Deaf People:
BID works to support the Deaf community in the West Midlands. It has travelled a long way from its modest beginnings in the latter part of the 19th Century, when its prime function was "to provide relief to Deaf people and attend to their spiritual needs".

BID has developed a reputation for providing innovative, high quality services to meet the many and varied needs of Deaf people. Today BID provides Care Management, Deaf Awareness, Support & Advice, Interpreting Services, Youth Work, and Equipment Sales amongst a growing portfolio of services.

Successful partnership and funding arrangements have been developed with colleges, housing associations, trusts, businesses and other organisations, which has helped BID to become more effective in pursuing its aims and objectives.

But still BID depends to a large extent upon private and voluntary donations to continue its work. Whether it's providing toys and videos for young Deaf children, or supporting Deaf people through interpreting or advocacy, we still need help – contact the Fundraising Department on 0121 246 6100 for information on how you can help.