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Relaxed Screenings

Monthly film screenings that are open to all, especially those with autism and learning disabilities.

Relaxed Screenings are open to all, especially those with autism and learning disabilities where films are screened in a relaxed, comfortable, safe, inclusive environment.

At the screenings, subtle changes to the cinema environment include the lights being kept on at a low level and lower than usual sound levels, no trailers or advertisements – just the film, allowance for increased levels of movement and noise, people to help you find your seats and captioned subtitles and audio description available.

Please see our what’s on listing for upcoming events

Why Relaxed Screenings?
We identified the need for relaxed screenings in collaboration with one of our resident companies, Square Pegs Arts, who run activities and projects for young people with learning disabilities, autism or social communication difficulties.  We both recognised the gap in the market locally and in our programme for an accessible screening.  Working with Square Pegs Arts, we identified a group of interested young people who already participated in their activity to look to develop a screening format that would appeal and work for them, needing it to be a bespoke and accessible cinema experience where they feel safe, valued and included. Feedback from the group of young people that Square Pegs Arts developed was that they would love to attend the cinema but in many cases had never been able to because most accessible screenings are on a weekday morning when they are in school.  It was therefore a key part of the development that these screenings happen on the weekend.  Each event focuses on engaging the audience with the film and is followed by a post film chat hosted by Square Pegs.  Members of the core group help select the films we screen at the club and help to run the event, assisting our front of house team.

Originally funded by Film Hub South East as a pilot project, the club has become a key part of our developing cinema programme and audience development.

Relaxed screenings will be at bOing! International Family Festival. Find out more about bOing!

Venue Accessibility

At Gulbenkian, we are striving towards a more accessible future.  Our experience running the relaxed screenings has spurred us to review other areas and we have invested in training for our staff in autism and dementia awareness.  We are also a participating member in the Mind the Gap Accessibility charter and have been making strides in making our whole programme and venue accessible.  Including developing Accessible welcome and journey videos, starting an access scheme and audio description facilities in our theatre auditorium.

More information:
If you would like any further information about accessible events at Gulbenkian please contact Helen at or call 01227 82 4397.

Square-pegs-arts logo autism friendly screening lloro

'Our film club allows people who are interested in film to access and enjoy the full cinema experience, and will also offer the opportunity to socialise afterwards as part of an informal post-film discussion.' Beth James, Square Pegs Arts


ART31 takes its name from Article 31 of the UN Convention on the Rights of a Child, which states that ‘Children have the right to relax and play, and to join in a wide range of cultural, artistic and other recreational activities’.

ART31 is a vision created with, by, and for young people in Kent, championing the belief that all children and young people have an entitlement to access high quality arts and culture, to empower them to achieve their creative potential, and to genuinely engage young people as equal partners in any decision making that affects them.

The ART31 Youth Board is made up of young people from across Kent aged 13-25 who steer its governance, and influence policy and practice across the county and beyond, challenging the creative sector to examine existing ways of working and integrate young people into the core of their practice.

Our projects with young people

Film tickets

See what other events are happening at the Gulbenkian
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