Back. First time in a shopping centre for 18 months. Bluewater, where the genesis of Purple Tuesday originated. Nearly four years ago. We visited 27 shops in that one day and in 23 I was completely ignored or only spoken to by frontline staff through my partner. A non-scientific experiment but I believe it was a fear of unintentionally offending me and not blatant prejudice. This week we visited less than half that number of shops but in over 80% my experience was very different. Spoken to. Conversation. Even about options for a baby buggy. Staff wearing sunflower lanyards. It felt a new dawn. Hope.
Bluewater Shopping Centre was the first to become a Disability Confident Leader. Where I cut my craft in shaping the disabled customer story. And learned how to support staff in making the improved experience a reality. Back to the floor for me.
The owners of Bluewater, Landsec, announced Piccadilly Lights will be the centrepiece of Purple Tuesday again this year. 2 November. 8am. Get in diary and watch it unfold live.
You will be pleased to know the new baby purchases were a real success. Am now toying with names and whether a variant of Piccadilly might just be a goer! Will keep you posted.