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Ayr Central to hold ‘quiet sessions’ at Santa’s Grotto for children with autism

Ayr Central and BUYMSH Appeal has announced it will hold autism-friendly ‘quiet sessions’ at the shopping centre’s Santa’s Grotto this year. 

Children with autism spectrum disorder can be over sensitive or under sensitive to noise, light, clothing or temperature, meaning the experience can prove stressful for them. The Centre and Charity still wants these children to have a magical Christmas experience though, so there will be a designated ‘quiet session’, designed for youngsters with autism or with sensory or learning disabilities and other vulnerabilities. During the Grotto quiet session, Santa and the Elves will be able to spend more time with children, if they require it, to ensure each child has a very special Christmas and Santa experience. George Reader, centre manager of Ayr Central commented “Christmas is a wonderful time of year for all the family and ta busy time of year for us as a shopping centre. “Our Grotto is loved by children of all ages and it is important that all local families are able to enjoy the magic of Christmas. The simple change to Santa’s Grotto will allow families to share an enjoyable Christmas outing, creating lasting memories”. The initiative is also being supporting by Ayr Central toy store, ToyTown, who will be holding ‘quiet’ shopping sessions in store. The quiet session will be held on Sunday 10 December between 11am and 12 noon. Booking online is unavailable as children requiring a space in a quiet slot will be seen on a first come, first served basis. A visit to the Grotto costs £7.00, with all proceeds going to Ayrshire’s BUYMSH appeal, and every child will receive a special Christmas present from Santa. 


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