In a first for the UK, the National Centre for Accessible Transport (ncat) is a £20 million project funded by the Motability Foundation, working in collaboration with charities Designability and Research Institute for Disabled Consumers (RiDC) and organisations Connected Places Catapult, Policy Connect and WSP.
Research conducted by Motability shows that disabled people in the UK currently make 38% fewer journeys than non-disabled people – a figure that hasn’t changed in the last decade. This impacts disabled people’s access to healthcare, employment, education and social activities.
However, analysis shows that completely closing the transport accessibility gap for disabled people in the UK would deliver benefits in the region of £72.4 billion per annum.
How we will be working as a consortium to fulfil the mission of ncat.
ncat’s mission is to make transport accessible for all by engaging with disabled people to better understand their experiences and co-design solutions; amplifying the voices of disabled people in all decision making; collaborating widely with transport stakeholders; and demonstrating good practice and impact to influence policy, with innovation at the heart of its work.
ncat is set up to be an ‘evidence centre’ so it’s remit is to understand, document and analyse the current transport landscape, by engaging with disabled people to hear about their transport experiences, alongside consulting with transport and industry professionals, to understand from all perspectives what does and doesn’t work, and why, and, moving forward, identify opportunities for change.
The centre will work in the first phase to generate these insights and evidence. This will, in the second phase, translate into and inform a funding call which will bring together transport innovators to work collaboratively with transport professionals/providers, disabled people, and disabled peoples’ organisations, to develop, test and implement solutions, working always alongside policy makers to influence behaviours. The third phase will look to embed the evidenced learning to enable the adoption and implementation of sustainable change.