Audio describing churches. In search of a template
Title of edited book
The Routledge handbook of audio description
Year of publication
A relatively under-researched field as opposed to other forms of audio description (AD), architecture audio description is crucial to achieve accessibility to heritage sites and promote a better understanding of the built environment. In the past few years, guidelines and recommendations have been developed to address its specificities. Intended to cover as many contexts as possible, these indications are not tailored to one building type in particular. However, some buildings – like places of worship – show recurring features and a high enough level of predictability to allow the creation of guidelines specifically suited to them. Taking advantage of the indications that apply to architecture AD in general, the present contribution focuses on the opportunity to open up churches as a specific category of places of worship to a wider audience, outlining a set of strategies that can be used as a framework to organise and standardise their description. The proposed guidelines follow a logical progression through three inter-related sections (introduction; outside the church; inside the church) and are meant to be a reproducible but also flexible template to inform the description of both historical and contemporary churches. Standardisation is suggested as a step forward to ensure an efficient descriptive process, easier fruition and more accurate quality assessment.