On Wednesday 3rd November, a group of people from the Ealing Techy Club visited Sight Village at Kensington Town Hall. Sight Village is a two day exhibition of organisations and equipment supporting people with a visual impairment. The trip, which was kindly funded by the Lohri Fund, began with us all meeting at the William Hobbayne Centre in Ealing, where we were picked up by Neville, our friendly driver from Ealing Community Transport. On arriving at Kensington Town Hall we were free to wander round the various stalls to look at and try equipment and find out about the various activities and resources available.
Of particular interest were the Orcam camera, which is a wearable device that converts text to speech as well as performing face recognition, and the Ultracane, which vibrates in response to objects within the path of the user. There were a wide range of magnifiers – both desktop and handheld – as well as Give Vision’s wearable magnifier. ‘Easy-to-use’ mobile phones and tablets were also on display, including the Doro smartphone – an Android-based device – and the Synapptics interface, both offering simplified interfaces for the user. Other organisations at the exhibition included Calibre Audio Library, Metro Blind Sports, VocalEyes, RNIB, Vision Holidays and Guide Dogs, providing us with an opportunity to find out about a wide range of activities and events and providing us with an opportunity to talk to people directly.
Following the visit, we were treated to a delicious lunch at The Muffin Man, a lovely tea shop just the other side of Kensington High Street, where we sat and talked about the things we had seen and the stands we had visited. Finally, after lunch, we were met by Neville and his bus to whisk us back to Hanwell and home. All-in-all it proved to be an interesting and enjoyable day out.