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Accessible heritage sites for all

Fond Farewell

Date Posted: 25 March 2021

We've just about dried our tears after yesterday afternoon's fond farewell to influential work colleague and friend Helen Smith.

Helen has been with the charity we are part of Living Options Devon for over 20 years and will be greatly missed by the whole team. Helen joined Living Options Devon as a service user and went on to become the Disability Champion for the charity, championing the needs and rights of our beneficiaries.

Integral Member of the team

For Heritage Ability she was an integral member of the team. Helen who has a visual impairment knows all too well the access barriers faced by disabled people, people with sensory loss, and hidden disabilities. Helen carried out a number of access audits and undertook her legendary Disability Awareness Training at a range of venues and visitor attractions.

Helen said "My job has taken me all over the county, I have delivered training to people seated in small village halls, to castles, stately homes, and even a tin mine.  I will really miss meeting new people and supporting them in improving access to their sites.  I've really enjoyed raising awareness of access needs to improve both the customer / visitor experience and the experience of employees".

Diana Crump said "Helen will be such a hard act to follow, her legacy will live on forever at Living Options Devon. We will all greatly miss her tenacity and good humor, as well as her influence in steering us to always consider the access needs of others.”

We are all going to greatly miss Helen, her ability to create culture change, and her sense of fun and good humor. We wish Helen a very happy and much-deserved retirement.  We will endeavor to continue in her legacy to support others in improving access for all.