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Accessibility and Disability Resource Centre


Contact Details

Downing Street,
Cambridge, CB2 3EQ
01223 333 400
01223 333 450

Access Issues

Martin Walker
01223 333 476
01223 333 450

Location, Services and Transport

Downing Site. See separate entry for Downing Site.


Disabled parking can be arranged by contacting the department Disability Liaison Officer.

General Information

Large building, containing North and South Wings and the Sedgwick Museum.


No smoking anywhere in the building.

Medical facilities

Four first aiders in the department.

Emergency procedures

Manual amd motorised evacuation chair in North and South Wings. The departmental fire manager should be alerted to potential need so that a personal evacuation plan can be prepared.

Physical Access


The main North Wing entrance through narrow double doors, each 66cm. Level access to South Wing through double doors, each 70cm.

Number of floors

Four floors in North Wing and five floors in South Wing, including ground floor.

Lifts and stairs

There are lifts in both the North and South Wings. The second floor of the North Wing (teaching labs and library) can be accessed from the third floor South Wing as well as the lift in the North Wing.

Lecture theatres

Tilley lecture theatre in South Wing has level entrance, then a narrow ramp down to theatre. Small amount of space, for one or two wheelchairs. Tiered seating, with wooden steps and no handrails.

Seminar/teaching rooms

Teaching laboratories and Harker seminar rooms on second floor of North Wing, level access from lift, with moveable furniture. South Wing seminar rooms and teaching laboratories all accessible by lift.


Second floor of North Wing, with level access from lift through double doors. Spacious inside, with moveable furniture. Plenty of workspace. Staff will help fetch books. Variable heights of workspaces available.

Computer facilities

There is a computer suite in the library for undergraduates. There is a postgraduate computer room on the top floor of North Wing, with level access from lift.


Disabled toilet on ground floor of North Wing, near lift. Braille signage. Also third floor South Wing with automatic door, large area for wheelchair turning. This is the same level as second floor North Wing.

Common rooms

Large common room on ground floor of North Wing. Spacious and carpeted, with moveable furniture.


Please see seperate entry for the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences.

Visual Impairments

Assistance dogs

Assistance dogs welcome.

Computer facilities

Main library web pages have high contrast and large text, and are machine readable. Currently no special hardware or software for visually impaired users.

Large print, Braille and audio

Large print information on prior request.

Library and magnification equipment

Magnifying glass available in library. Photocopier available for text enlargement, and coloured paper available also.

Signs and wayfinding

Signs in museum vary - signs on the new displays are large and clear, but signs on the older cabinets are small and hard to read. Little directional signposting.


  • New displays in museum are very well lit. Older cabinets are rather dimly lit, and difficult to see clearly.
  • Library and museum staff will assist as necessary — please ask.
  • The Sedgwick Museum has a handling trolley and some touchable objects on display. Museum staff are always available for additional assistance with handling specific objects and for requests.

Hearing Impairments

Induction loops

No induction loops currently.

Specific Learning Difficulties and Mental Health Issues

Arrangements in place for students with Specific Learning Difficulties. Discuss your needs with the Disability Liaison Officer.

Planned Access Improvements

It is planned to improve internal access within the museum to allow easier access between levels.

Other Useful Information

There is a high level of general awareness of disability issues throughout the department at all levels, and we pride ourselves on our ability to be flexible and inclusive of a wide range of students who might require special support. We endeavour to include students as far as possible in the whole range of course activities, including practical classes and fieldwork.

If it is not possible for a student to go in the field, we are keen to offer alternative activities to enable all students to fully participate in the rich experience of studying the Earth Sciences.

The information on this page is the responsibility of the Department of Earth Sciences. The ADRC updates information as it is received from the Department. This page was last updated on 23rd May 2012. To ensure the information contained here is current, please check with the Department of Earth Sciences.