British Sign Language interpreting

According to the Department for Work and Pensions there are about 70,000 British Sign Language users in Britain – according to some surveys, Sign Language is used by many more than this. Knockhundred is frequently called upon to provide professional BSL interpreting support.

"Thanks again for sorting this [British Sign Language interpreting], always a pleasure to work with you."
Leadership and Empowerment Manager,
RADAR
"Following on from the conference yesterday, I am writing on behalf of everyone at the Meningitis Trust, to say a huge thank you for providing us with two fantastic BSL interpreters. The feedback from the delegates who needed the translation was extremely positive. 'BSL interpreters up to scratch, not always at large events these days'. 'The [BSL] interpreters were very good, I will be happy to use them again in any further events'. They were both able to deal with the emotional, scientific and medical content as well as the various presenting styles in the high professional standard that we had hoped for."
The Meningitis Trust

Our professional British Sign Language (BSL) interpreters are experienced in working between British Sign Language and English.

British Sign Language interpreters and qualifications

When you book a British Sign Language interpreter, please bear in mind that you will need an appropriately qualified interpreter for your particular assignment:

  • A Junior Trainee Interpreter (JTI) is likely to be qualified up to Level 3 NVQ and will have competent BSL skills in both listening and speaking.
  • A Trainee Interpreter (TI) is likely to be qualified up to level 4 NVQ and will be able to use complex language and express themselves fluently in sign language.
  • A Member of the Register (MRSLI) will have met nationally recognised standards agreed by the Interpreter Registration Standards. Such interpreters are highly skilled in the use of BSL and English.

We will be happy to advise which level will best suit your needs.

Lead-time needed to book a British Sign Language interpreter

Please note that fully trained and professional British Sign Language interpreters are scarce in the UK. For that reason, you should give us as much notice as possible if you need to book a BSL interpreter.

Before booking one of our BSL interpreters, we advise that you check that the deaf person involved does indeed use BSL as their preferred form of communication – not all deaf people use British Sign Language.

Other options include:

  • Lip Speaking
  • Sign Supported English
  • Speech to Text
Some of our British Sign Language interpreting services

Knockhundred offers many different types of BSL interpreting services including:

  • British Sign Language interpreters for business meetings
  • British Sign Language court interpreting
  • British Sign Language interpreting for legal meetings/conference
  • British Sign Language interpreters for medical consultations
  • British Sign Language interpreting for interviews
  • British Sign Language interpreting at disciplinary hearings

Contact us with your requirements and we will do our very best to match the most suitable and appropriately qualified BSL interpreter with your assignment.

Working with BSL users and British Sign Language interpreters

You'll need to tell us how many deaf and hearing people will be present and how long the event is likely to last. This may affect how many sign language interpreters you will need. Any assignment lasting over two hours will usually require two British Sign Language interpreters.

If working alone, remember that the BSL interpreter will need a break every 20 to 30 minutes.

During an assignment, speak clearly and avoid using abbreviations or jargon. Speak directly to (and face) the deaf person, not the sign language interpreter. Allow time for the deaf person to look at any visual materials before discussing them.
If you have any background documentation or notes that can be supplied before the assignment, this is always appreciated by our BSL interpreters.

In order that the British Sign Language interpreter is able to provide the best possible service on the day, the sign language user and the interpreter must be able to see each other clearly, and that those relying on spoken English can hear the interpreter clearly.

British Sign Language interpreters wherever you are

We can supply British Sign Language interpreters in:

  • London
  • Birmingham
  • Manchester
  • Cardiff
  • Edinburgh

...as well as most other areas of the UK.

Contact us for a quotation for any of our language services.