Morrisons Supermarket is to introduce a ‘Quieter Hour’ in all their stores – designed to help customers who struggle with music and the other noise associated with supermarket shopping.
The new initiative has been created with the support of the National Autistic Society. Many people who are autistic or those with autistic children can find shopping in a supermarket an anxious experience.
Morrisons carried out a trial earlier in the year at their Lincoln, Woking and Gainsborough stores and identified improvements that could be made as well as the best time for the Quieter Hour to take place.
Beginning this Saturday, the ‘Quieter Hour’ takes place every Saturday from 9-10am. Morrisons have 4 stores in Renfrewshire: Paisley – Anchor Mills, Paisley – Falside Road, Johnstone and Erskine.
During Quieter Hours, the stores will:
- Dim the lights
- Turn music and radio off
- Avoid making tannoy announcements
- Reduce movement of trolleys and baskets
- Turn checkout beeps and other electrical noises down
- Place a poster outside to tell customers it’s Quieter Hour
Daniel Cadey, the from the National Autistic Society, said: “Around 700,000 people are on the autism spectrum in the UK. This means they see, hear and feel the world differently to other people, often in a more intense way. Morrisons ‘Quieter Hour’ is a step in the right direction for autistic people who find supermarket shopping a real struggle.”
Morrisons said that listening to customers, they found that one in five had a friend or family member with autism and many liked the idea of being able to shop in more comfort at 9-10am on a Saturday.
Angela Gray, Morrisons Community Champion at Woking said: “I was involved in the initial trial as my son is autistic and we found that these changes made a real difference. The trial showed there is a need for a quieter shopping experience for some customers.”