July 19 (Reuters) - Morrisons, Britain’s No. 4 supermarket chain, has introduced a ‘Quieter Hour’ in all of its stores, in an effort to help customers who struggle to cope with music and the other noises associated with supermarket shopping.
The new initiative, which will take place in all the company’s stores every Saturday morning from 9 to 10 o’clock, has been created with the support of the National Autistic Society, Morrisons said in a blog.
“Many people who are autistic or those with autistic children can find shopping in a supermarket an anxious experience,” it said.
“Having carried out a trial earlier in the year in (some of our) stores, we identified improvements that could be made as well as the best time for the Quieter Hour to take place.”
Morrisons said it would dim the lights, turn music and the radio off, avoid making tannoy announcements, reduce movement of trolleys and baskets and turn checkout beeps and other electrical noises down during the quieter hours.
“Quieter Hour is a step in the right direction for autistic people who find supermarket shopping a real struggle,” Morrisons’ blog quoted Daniel Cadey from the National Autistic Society as saying. (Reporting by Justin George Varghese in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)