Events News

Halton Borough Council is supporting the first ever Purple Tuesday at Runcorn Shopping City.

The event, which runs from 9am to 5:30pm on Tuesday 13 November, was organised by the Shopping City in consultation with Halton Borough Council officers and members of Halton Speak Out.

Purple Tuesday is the UK’s first accessible shopping day, established to recognise the importance and needs of disabled consumers, raise awareness of the value of the Purple Pound, and promote inclusive shopping.

Taking place on 13 November 2018 to coincide with the run up to the peak Christmas period, Purple Tuesday has been created and co-ordinated by disability organisation Purple.

Purple Tuesday isn’t just a one-day shopping event (like Black Friday, for example).

The aim of the day is to increase awareness of the value and needs of disabled consumers and encourage sustainable changes in business practices that improve customer experience over the long term.

For retailers, this will result in the opening up of their products and services to the widest customer base possible. – https://purpletuesday.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Purple-Tuesday-How-to-get-involved_Screen.pdf

Runcorn Shopping City is encouraging as many retailers to get on board as possible, they are proposing ‘fast lane’ tills for those with additional needs, asking staff to take more of a helping hand approach by coming from behind the till to help people pack and put away their items, etc.

There will be information and advice on local services in the Community Square 10am-2pm where shoppers can find out more about purple Tuesday and also about support services in the local area that can help break down barriers to people with additional needs accessing the community (Confirmed services are: Community Connector, Halton Speak Out, Shopmobility, Sure Start to Later Life, Mental Health Hub, Health Improvement Team and more)

The Shopping City’s Customer ambassadors will also be present talking about the help and support they offer to shoppers, such as helping carry their bags, directing them to their store of choice, helping them to access transport home, linking them to local services for additional help etc.

Shopping City staff also hope to encourage staff from the different outlets to take some time to come to the square to learn more about purple Tuesday, the local services they can signpost customers too, including the role of the customer ambassadors and there will also be an opportunity to sign up as a Community Champion with the Community Connector team.

Halton Borough Council’s Executive Board Member for Health and Wellbeing, Cllr Marie Wright, said: “Nearly one in every five people in the UK has a disability or impairment, and over half of households have a connection to someone with a disability. Their collective spending power – the Purple Pound – is worth £249 billion to the UK economy.

“However, this potential is not being fully realised. There are still real (and perceived) barriers that make it harder for disabled people to find work, spend money online and in store, and enjoy a drink or meal out.

The aim of Purple Tuesday is to make customer-facing businesses more aware of these opportunities and challenges and inspire them to make changes to improve the disabled customer experience over the long term. “.

Karl Clawley, Centre Manager at Shopping City Runcorn is keen to engage with all members of the local community.

“We have successfully launched a Weekly Autism Hour which takes place every Wednesday from 4.00 pm – 5.00 pm and we have been inundated with positive feedback.

“We also have an Autism Chill Room that is available seven days a week for people to go to if necessary when they are visiting Shopping City. Purple Tuesday has now allowed us to engage even further with those people that may need assistance when they’re shopping.

“We have a number of stores involved in Purple Tuesday and we will also be hosting an event in our Community Square. Various support groups will be present which will include Community Connectors, Shop Mobility, Halton Speak Out and other Health Improvement Teams who will be showcasing the help and advice that is available from 10am to 2pm”