New signs in Goole’s West Park are helping to make the town more inclusive by teaching people the basic’s of British Sign Language (BSL).
The signs, which demonstrate how to sign simple phrases and letters, have been installed by Goole Town Council in the children’s play area at the park, to help people communicate non-verbally. The idea was suggested by Goole resident, Tanya Andrews, whose daughter Emily, was born profoundly deaf. Tanya explained: “My daughter was born profoundly deaf in February 2019, we as a family have had to learn British Sign Language and I feel more deaf awareness is needed for the public. “I visited a play park at Lakeside in Doncaster and they had signs with the BSL alphabet. I saw a few children using it to spell their names. I then saw on the School Sign Shop website, where the boards are from, that they did the BSL boards, so I ordered a couple for our garden and then thought they would be a great resource in our local park too.”
Tanya approached Goole Town Councillor, Anthony Raspin to raise the suggestion, who then took the idea to a full council meeting, with fellow councillors unanimously voting in favour of installing the boards. Cllr Raspin said: “When Tanya approached me about the idea I thought it was a fantastic suggestion and all the councillors wanted to support it. “We are really keen to ensure Goole is inclusive for all residents, so were more than happy to support this.” The council are also looking into funding options to allow them to install signs in other parks and public places around the town. Speaking about the difference the signs will make, Tanya said: “The signs will give youngsters and adults alike a fun way of learning British Sign Language. It also means that if people are learning BSL, more deaf people and BSL users like my daughter, can feel included within the community. “A big thank you to Cllr Anthony Raspin and Goole Town Council for their support on this project.”
British Sign Language signs have been installed at West Park in Goole. (26-01-107 SU)