The Mercury Receives Autism Friendly Accreditation
Mercury shopping centre has been awarded an Autism Friendly accreditation from
the National Autistic Society (NAS) in recognition of work to make shopping
more accessible for people with autism spectrum conditions.
visiting the centre in Romford are already familiar with its Sensory Tuesdays
when, every Tuesday The Mercury becomes a calmer place, the music is turned
off, hand driers replaced with paper towels and stores are requested to either
turn their in-store music off or have it at a low level, allowing shoppers –
not only those who suffer from autism - to enjoy a break from the hustle and
bustle of everyday life and the overload of too much information.
with NAS, the shopping centre owner Ellandi and shopping centre manager
Workman, have introduced a number of other initiatives, including providing sensory
visual guides to help those planning a visit to the centre, and offering ‘alert
cards’ used by visitors at their discretion.
staff have received training on understanding autism. It’s great to be part of
an organisation that focuses on Autism, we have received an Autism Friendly award
for the Mercury and will continue to improve in any way we can.” said Brad Halfacre, Assistant Contracts Manager
for Axis Group at The Mercury.
“By seeking external expertise, training staff and
acting on the feedback of its autistic customers, The Mercury has made a
fantastic effort to be an inclusive environment.
In particular, identifying
quiet areas, running regular sensory shopping days and offering visual guides
and resources to help support visitors, the Centre has shown a real commitment to
making a big difference to the lives of autistic people in the local
“We hope that many more
shopping centres will follow their excellent example, then we will be a little
bit closer to creating a world that supports and works for autistic people,
their families and carers.” said Daniel
Cadey, Autism Friendly
Development Manager at National Autism Society.
far over 7,000 shops have already signed up to Autism Hour and the campaign is
being backed by celebrities including Chris Packham, Anne Hegerty and Christine
is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how people perceive the
world and interact with others.