A Lichfield toy store will extend in-store “silent hours” for an additional week.
The Entertainer, in the Three Spiers shopping center, reopened yesterday (April 12) after the lockdown restrictions were eased.
This week, the first hour of opening will feature reduced music and dim lights for the benefit of visitors with autism.
This decision was praised by Tom Purser, Campaigns Manager at the National Autistic Society. He said:
“We are very pleased to hear that The Entertainer continues to provide quiet hours to their customers.
“People with autism make up a large part of our society – around one in 100 people in the UK. They and their families want the ability to go to the shops, but many find the crowds, noise and unpredictability of our main streets completely overwhelming.
“The smallest changes can help pave the way for people with autism. Things like staff who learn more about autism and make simple adjustments like turn down the music or dim the lights.
“As restrictions on coronaviruses ease, it’s more important than ever for retailers to consider people with autism and ensure they don’t get stranded. ”
Tom Purser, National Autism Society
Gary Grant, Founder and Executive Chairman of The Entertainer, said:
“Shopping and returning to busy areas can be a challenge for those who find the hustle and bustle, lighting and noise uncomfortable.
“So in our continued commitment to making our stores accessible to all, our quiet hours will return throughout the first week of response.
“For the first hour of opening each day, we will turn off the music, dim the lights where possible and aim to make our stores quieter.
“This is to show our continued support to our customers with autism and their families and to those who find the retail environment more difficult, especially at a time of so much change.”
Gary Grant, the artist