YORK Disability Week returned with a "fascinating" and "moving" programme of events to promote equality, inclusivity and accessibility in the area.

Running for the fifth year, the events in York Disability Week, which ran between November 27 and December 4, offered something for people of all ages, disabled or not.

Mainly led by disabled people and free to attend, some were held online, both online and in-person and some were in-person only.

A spokesperson for the planning group for the Disability Week said that the programme was delivered in areas outside of the city centre, in the wake of the decision by City of York Council to permanently ban all disabled residents with a Blue Badge from using it to access the footstreets.

"As the footstreets were already subject to a temporary ban, all of this year’s in-person events were anyway planned to be held outside that area. That is a shocking indictment on our city and it is hoped that the movement to ‘Reverse the Ban’, supported by numerous organisations across the city, means that York Disability Week 2022 can take place right across the city", the spokesperson said.

Despite these restrictions in the city centre, over 400 people took part in the programme - described as both "fascinating" and "moving."

The organisers were also "delighted" to have the support of York Paralympian, Beth Moulam this year.

Beth represented Team GB at boccia at the Tokyo Paralympic games in September - and said she was "right behind" the programme's aim to promote an equal, inclusive and accessible York.

During the Disability Week, there was celebration held at the Christmas Fair run by York Inspirational Kids and the Christmas Singing and Signing run in Brunswick.

Art exhibitions at York Hospital and the central library offered another lens through which to ‘think again’ about disability.

Meanwhile, there were opportunities to learn more on how to get your voice heard in Parliament, how to make use of the Equalities and Human Rights Law in York, tips on moving into employment if you have a chronic illness and how to make use of York AccessAble the access guide to the city.

There were "thought provoking" talks and discussions about what it’s like to be disabled and from a minority ethnic background, a young woman’s experiences of autism and young adults’ experience of visual impairment - all with the common theme that society creates "unnecessary barriers" to respecting and valuing people, disabled and non-disabled alike.

The programme also had international links, with Ghent in Belgium explaining how they have created a safe and accessible city centre respectful of disabled people, as did speakers from Urbino in Italy.