This access statement does not contain personal opinions as to our suitability for those with access needs, but aims to accurately describe the facilities and services that we offer all our guests/visitors.

The Atkinson recognises that barriers to access can include: physical/environmental, sensory, cultural, attitudinal, financial and logistical. Every reasonable measure is taken to ensure that activities and events are accessible for all.


The Atkinson is Sefton’s arts and cultural hub in the middle of Lord Street in Southport. We offer a great day out for families and our theatres offer the best in comedy, music, drama, dance and film for an exciting night time programme.

Come and see our changing exhibitions and collections, discover ancient Egypt within our stunning Egyptology gallery and explore our surprising Museum with its many interactive displays and stories.

Our busy Library is the heart of the building, it is a bright, open and welcoming space. Free wifi means it’s perfect for catching up with work or meeting friends. It’s filled with books, comics, DVDs and PC’s.

The Children’s Library is a safe, family friendly space with a pirate ship in the centre which is perfect for reading with smaller children.

Linaker Children’s Centre is located in the rooms adjacent to the Children’s Library delivering its services 3 days a week; Monday, Thursday & Friday.

We have a  gift shop and cafe on the ground floor – so don’t leave without trying our cakes and buying a piece of beautiful handmade jewellery or a little memento of your visit!

The Atkinson’s Access Policy Statement is available via this link: Access Policy Statement

Before you arrive

  • You can view The Atkinson before you come through clicking our Visual story before visiting The Atkinson.
  • Full details and maps of how to reach us are in the Visit Us section of the website.
  • You can plan your journey by car or public transport by using; simply enter your postcode and ours, which is PR8 1DB, to get directions.
  • The nearest railway station is Southport which is approximately 3 minutes walk from the venue and has frequent services to and from Liverpool, Wigan, Ormskirk and further afield. Taxis are available at the station, where there is a taxi office. Accessible taxis services are available at the station.
  • The nearest bus stop to The Atkinson is on Lord Street outside Christ Church. Local bus information is at
  • Bus timetables are available from Merseytravel on 0870 608 2608. Train times are available from National Rail Enquiries on 08457 484950.
  • The Atkinson’s brochure is available in alternative formats on request.


Car Parking and Arrival

  • There are several car parks close to The Atkinson.
  • After 6.00pm there is FREE on street parking available down Lord Street and throughout the town.
  • There is a Park & Ride service in Southport from the Esplanade, click the name for further information. Buses drop off on Lord Street directly outside the Atkinson.
  • If you hold a Blue Badge, you can park in either of the 2 designated parking spaces outside The Atkinson. These spaces are available on a first come, first served basis. We ask you to come into the Box Office to get a window display notice and to hand it back in when leaving. Parking is only for The Atkinson visitors and not for general disabled parking for the town.
  • There is one blue badge parking space on Market Street, next to the old Carlton Hotel and on the corner of the Vincent Hotel (approx. 5 minutes from The Atkinson). There are also two spaces on Eastbank Street (facing Superdrug) (approximately 6 minutes from The Atkinson).
  • Drop-off is possible outside The Atkinson’s main entrance – access is from the bollards outside Southport Town Hall. Please press the button and a member of the team will buzz you in.
  • There are no steps to the foyer.

Main Entrance, Foyer, Shop,  Box Office and Bakery

  • Access is at street level, the main entrance is a paved flat surface with a slight uphill gradient. There are automatic doors at the main entrance and approximately 5 metres in to the foyer space.
  • There is a lift to all floors, accessible toilets throughout the building and wheelchair spaces within the ground level section of the auditorium. We also have wheelchairs on site for visitor use if required.
  • The Shop and Box Office is on the left hand side and is fully accessible with low-level counter.
  • An induction loop is set up on our Box Office counter and full infra-red emitters are in all our performance spaces
  • The building is well-lit.
  • Tables and chairs in the café are free standing. Large print menus will be available on request.
  • Ramps allow for wheelchair and pushchair access to the ground floor library and lift. The junior library is accessible via the lift in the main library.
  • There is a disabled toilet on the ground floor in between the foyer and the Library – this is accessible with a radar key. If you don’t have one – please ask any member of staff or at any manned desk on the ground floor.
  • The Bakery is on the right hand side of the entrance and is fully accessible with no steps.
  • The Shop is open when the Box Office is open

The Library

  • There are two steps and ramp with hand-rail at library entrance.
  • There is lower level access point at cash desk.
  • There are two steps and lift down to junior library from main library.
  • We offer longer loan periods and overdue charge arrangements to borrowers with visual impairment.
  • We offer a selection on large print fiction & non-fiction books for standard loan.
  • We offer spoken word fiction & non-fiction in CD format. Issued on the same basis as a standard book loan and not chargeable.
  • Sefton library service offers an e-book and e-audio book lending service, staff in the library can help with accessing this service.
  • All public use computers have software installed to increase text size.
  • There are large format colour coded keyboard and mouse available on request.
  • The computers are fully accessible with adjustable table heights available.
  • The self- service machines have the facility to increase text size.
  • There is a portable Hearing Loop available on request.
  • There are 2 steps into the Children’s Library
  • You can use the lift just press -1 and it will take you to the Children’s Library

Public Toilets

  • There are accessible toilets throughout the building and a dedicated spacious accessible toilet facility on the Ground Floor.
  • There is a full adult changing facility on the first floor. It has disabled toilets and a changing bed and hoist. The room is fully equipped with emergency pulled chords at high and low levels, a shower and privacy screen and it is fully lockable for your peace of mind.

The Performance Spaces

  • The Auditorium has a loop system. Please request assistance at Box Office
  • Wheelchairs enter the Theatre from the lower level or if seated at the back of the theatre, from level 2. There is a lift and a member of the team is always on hand to help you in any way.
  • Within the Studio wheelchairs enter through the main doors – there are no steps.
  • There are disabled toilets within the Studio

The Bars

  • The Theatre Bar is on level 1 has no steps and the counter in lowered in the centre for access
  • The Studio Bar is on level 1 within the actual performance space on the left hand side and the counter is lowered for access

Additional Information

  • Assistance dogs are welcome throughout the building and The Atkinson staff are available to assist with guidance around the building.
  • Flashing lights may be used in some productions, but a warning will always be given prior to the start of the performance.
  • Every reasonable measure is taken to ensure that activities and events are accessible for all although some limitations occasionally may be necessary because of the nature of the target audience for a particular activity. Please let us know if you have a specific access requirement which we can assist with.
  • Many of our front of house staff and volunteers have received Dementia Awareness training and The Atkinson is a Dementia Friendly environment. The Atkinson’s staff and volunteers receive regular training to help us maintain our commitment to customer care.
  • If you intend to visit The Atkinson  and have specific access requirements that we can assist with please contact the Box Office on 01704 533333 or email is

Contact Information

Access Contact:


Venue Address:

Emma Harrison


The Atkinson, Lord Street, Southport Merseyside PR8 1DB

Telephone: Box Office: 01704 533333

Library: 0151 934 2113

Hours Of Operation: Box Office 10am – 5pm Monday to Friday, 10 – 4pm Saturday 11am – 4pm

Sundays on selected Sunday throughout the year.

Library 10am – 5pm Monday to Friday, 10 – 4pm Saturday*

11am – 4pm Sundays on selected Sunday throughout the year*.

*the library is open but not manned 2pm – 4pm Saturday or all day Sunday, there is not access to public computers.

Local Accessible Taxi: All licensed taxi firms in Southport have accessible cabs.
Local Public Transport: There is a comprehensive guide at