Hemel shopping centre hosts 'quiet sessions' at Giving Grotto so everyone can see Santa this Christmas

The 'quiet sessions' are for children with additional support needs

Friday, 10th December 2021, 10:50 am

The Marlowes in Hemel Hempstead is opening the Giving Grotto early on Sundays to provide quiet sessions so everyone has the chance to meet Santa.

On Sunday, December 12, and Sunday, December 19, from 9am till 11am children with special sensory needs, or any other needs, will have the chance to meet Father Christmas during a quiet session.

On the quiet mornings, although the centre will be open to the general public, the majority of shops will be closed and there will be no background music, creating a much quieter and more relaxing environment.

Sign up to our daily Hemel Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The Giving Grotto at The Marlowes

There will be plenty of staff at the Grotto to ensure any questions/needs are fulfilled.

The grotto experience, which lasts for around 10 minutes - a little longer for multiple children – is also open to siblings who don’t have special needs, so that families can enjoy their visit together.

A suggested donation of £5 per child (excluding cost of photo item and merchant service fees) is requested for each child wishing to participate in the experience, with all proceeds going to DENS, back to supporting people in the local community.

The centre normally opens from 9.30am and shops at 11am, so the centre may start to get busier towards the end of the session. Families are advised to visit early if possible. Queues are likely but these will be managed to ensure the experience is as smooth as possible.

Quiet sessions are pre-bookable or walk up – booking details and contact information for specific requirements can be found on the Marlowes website.

Read More

Read More
The Marlowes Giving Grotto will bring the true magic of Christmas to Hemel this ...

Lavinia Douglass, marketing manager at The Marlowes, said: “It is really important to the team here at The Marlowes that the centre is an inclusive setting and providing these sessions is part of that – we know that while Christmas is an incredibly exciting time, it can also be extremely challenging for those with additional needs.

"By hosting these sessions, no-one misses out, and families can enjoy a visit without having to worry about the centre being too busy or noisy.

"The Arctic Adventure Grotto is a fantastic experience and we’re so glad we are able to make sure every child gets the chance to enjoy it.”

> Saturday, December, 11 - 9.30am till 5.30pm

> Sunday, December 12 - 9am till 5pm (9am is quiet session)

> Saturday, December, 18 - 9.30am till 5.30pm

> Sunday, December 19 - 9am till 5pm (9am is quiet session)

> Monday, December 20 to Thursday, December 23 - 9am till 5.30pm

> Christmas Eve - 9am till 4pm.

Walk-up slots will be available however pre-booking online is recommended - The Marlowes Only card payments are being accepted.