Disabled Access Guide
Access for all
The RBSA Gallery in Birmingham welcomes all visitors and we aim to provide the best possible access for everyone to enjoy our Gallery. Please find below our disable access guide and details about our accessibility facilities.
What is the RBSA?
RBSA stands for Royal Birmingham Society of Artists. The RBSA is one of the oldest art societies in the UK and can date its history back to 1814. At present, it has approximately 250 Members and Associates – ‘Member’ and ‘Associate’ are the terms we use to describe artists who have been elected to part or full member of the Society. The RBSA is also an artist-led charity and is one of only a few art societies in the UK to own and run its own art gallery – which is called the RBSA Gallery. The RBSA Gallery has been based in its current location since 2000. The site is a converted jewellery factory and is located just of St. Paul’s Square within Birmingham’s historic Jewellery Quarter. The Gallery is open seven days a week and is free to visit. It provides a varied programme of exhibitions, workshops, and events to help support artists and promote engagement with the visual arts.
Monday 10:30 - 17:30.
Tuesday 10:30 - 17:30.
Wednesday 10:30 - 17:30.
Thursday 10:30 - 17:30.
Friday 10:30 - 17:30.
Saturday 10:30 - 17:00.
Sunday 13:00 - 17:00.
Public Car Parks
- There is a car park for public use within 200m (approx) from the RBSA Gallery.
- The name of the car park is Newhall Street NCP Car Park.
- The car park is located on Newhall Street.
- Google Map for Car Park
On Street Parking
- Meter parking is available in the St. Paul’s Square area and is free on Sundays
- Blue-badge-holders can park directly outside the Gallery entrance, provided they show their badge clearly in the windscreen.
Getting to the RBSA Gallery
The Gallery address is 4 Brook Street – postcode B3 1SA – and is easy to travel to by train, tram, bus, car, or on foot.
For more details about how to find the RBSA Gallery, please see our How to Find Us page
Entering the RBSA Gallery
The pavement outside the Gallery is made using Victorian blue-brick pavers, which are in keeping with the heritage conservation standards of the area. The pavement is level with the double doors of the Gallery entrance, providing level-entry access for easy wheelchair access. The floors are level throughout the Gallery and are made of tiles or laminate. Each space is also well lit with a range of lights and spot-lights. The width of the door opening is 180cm (5ft 11in)
Ground Floor Gallery Facilities
The ground floor exhibition spaces include craft gallery cases, which display contemporary hand-made ceramics, textiles, and jewellery. There are also three display areas for solo shows of 2D and 3D work by RBSA artists. All craft and artworks on the ground floor are for sale and can be taken on the day of purchase.
The ground floor has a self-service café area, which provides hot and cold drinks alongside a small selection of sweet and savoury snacks. For something more substantial, there are several pubs and eateries around St. Paul’s Square and visitors are welcome to eat food purchased from other venues within the RBSA Gallery café area.
Visitors can ask for information or assistance at the reception desk, which is designed to accommodate a wheelchair or chair, if needed. Staff members are also happy to bring items from higher shelves or plinths to the desk or café area for visitors to view more clearly at a lower level.
Just around the corner from the reception desk is a fully-accessible toilet. This includes grab rails, coloured walls to help improve the visibility of the fittings, and basic baby-changing facilities.
There is a lift located next to the reception desk. which is available for public use. The lift is a standard lift and not a disabled lift specific. The staff do not need to be noticed about using the lift. The lift door width is 80cm and the dimensions of the lift are 108cm x 140cm. (3ft 7in x 4ft 7in)
There are accessible toilet facilities within the RBSA Gallery. The toilet is not for sole use of disabled people and is unisex. The toilet can used without a key. The width of the accessible toilet door is 94cm (3ft 1in) and the inside dimensions of the accessible toilet are 140cm x 247cm (4ft 7in x 8ft 1in). Wall-mounted grab rails are available and there is an emergency alarm.
Upper Floor Galleries 1 and 2
There are two upper floor galleries. The first floor gallery shows a range of exhibitions throughout the year - including the annual display of artworks and archive materials from the RBSA Collection. Gallery One also hosts the Society’s annual Winter and Summer art workshops for adults, as well as a varied programme of artists demonstrations and talks.
In addition to standard monthly events, the Gallery can also design and deliver specific activities to suit group bookings. For example, we have delivered: handling sessions for visually-impaired groups, signed workshops for Deaf artists, and free guided tours for schools and art groups.
The Gallery spaces can also be hired and Gallery 1 is used regularly by local art societies for their group meetings.
The second floor gallery also shows a range of exhibitions. Larger shows, such as the RBSA Open and Prize exhibitions are often displayed across both floors. As its name suggests, Open exhibitions welcome entries from all artists throughout the UK. Each artist goes through a selection process and the selected artworks are included in the exhibition.
Prize exhibitions follow a similar process, but selection is made by a panel of guest judges, rather than Society members. Again suggested in the name - Prize exhibitions offer a range of prizes and usually include a first prize of one thousand pounds!The majority of the Artworks displayed in galleries 1 and 2 are for sale and can be taken at the end of the exhibition.
The RBSA Gallery also takes part in the Own Art Scheme, which is a scheme by the Arts Council that enables customers to purchase original works of art using an interest-free loan. This breaks the cost of a work into ten monthly installments, making it easier to afford.
Access for All
The RBSA Gallery is the home of the RBSA and we want as many people to visit and enjoy the visual artworks as possible - This is why we are working hard to improve our accessibility.
For more access information about the Gallery, see our film with BSL - Disabled Access Guide Video
As a charitable organisation without core funding, the RBSA Gallery relies on its Members, Associates and Volunteers to help run. The running costs are paid for through a combination of membership fees, sales of artworks, gallery hire and fundraising activities. This means every contribution made is vital to help the gallery stay open.
If you would like to enquire about booking a group visit or activity, please get in touch with us via 0121 236 4353 or email@example.com.
Thank you for your support. We look forward to welcoming you to the Gallery.