Milton Keynes shopping destination wins national praise for the way it treats disabled shoppers

The centre:mk has been shortlisted for a national award for its 'open to all' strategy for disabled people.

It is in the running for a Re:spect award, part of the prestigious Revo Gold Awards due to take place next month.

Purple Tuesdays are successful

Purple Tuesdays are successful

Re:spect recognises the shopping centre's ongoing programme aimed at ensuring the highest standards of customer experience for their disabled guests.

This programme includes a Purple Tuesday activity, delivered this year in conjunction with disability organisation Purple.

The centre welcomed disability groups including Dogs for Good, who brought their assistance dogs to experience shopping and try out the facilities available.

Centre:mk is one of the only Changing Places changing room locations in Milton Keynes.

It also holds twice weekly 'quiet shopping' hours and runs an ongoing training programme for staff to be able to assist guests with both seen and unseen disabilities.

The centre has introduced a new Sunflower lanyard scheme, designed to help guests with a need for additional support when shopping.

It works by offering a sunflower patterned lanyard to individuals who have a hidden disability. This enables centre staff and retailers to identify them and understand they might need some additional assistance as they shop.

The lanyards are available free of charge from the Guest Services desk and have so far proved to be popular.

Kevin Duffy, centre:mk director said: “Our work with the disabled community fits with our “Open to all” strategy, our ongoing programme to make the shopping experience at centre:mk more supportive and comfortable for people with disabilities. We are always looking for more ways to make guests to the centre feel welcome and cared for and strive to deliver the best customer service for every guest who visits.”

Centre:mk is one of the top 10 shopping destinations in the UK and attracts around 24 million guest visits each year.