As part of the award-winning app that is designed to help people with autism and anxiety plan and visualise their daily activities, the platform features visitor guides for their venue partners, with Cambridge City being the first non-league football club to sign up. These guides allow football clubs to better support fans with additional needs during stadium visits. The software enables fans who would typically struggle in heightened sensory environments, such as sports stadia, to reduce sensory stress by seeing, planning, and preparing for each stage of their matchday visit.
Large crowds, loud cheering, floodlights, sights, and sounds typical of matchday can cause significant anxiety for fans with additional needs, particularly those with autism. Clubs are increasingly looking for solutions that improve access, inclusivity and allow all fans to enjoy a fair and equal matchday experience.
Picturepath founder, Richard Nurse said: “We’re delighted to partner with Cambridge City to allow visitors to plan their day using picturepath’s visitor guides. As a father to an autistic son, I know how unsettling it can be for autistic or anxious fans when visiting an unfamiliar environment. It’s wonderful to see that Cambridge City are committed to making visits less stressful and more inclusive for its fans and we are so pleased to have them on board.”
Fans can use picturepath to create visual timelines to plan out their matchday experience, which helps them better manage expectations and reduce anxiety. The app uses images from each specific stadium including parking and transport links, stadium entrances, views from seats, toilets, catering, and navigating back home.
Speaking of the partnership, City Chairman, Kevin Satchell said: “We are proud to be the first non-league club to team up with Picturepath, enabling us to work with them to provide a fantastic matchday experience for supporters with autism and anxiety. This collaboration is part of an exciting new era for the football club as we move to our new home in Sawston and demonstrates our commitment to making the club a safe and inclusive atmosphere for all supporters whilst supporting tech start-ups. We would like to thank Vince Castiglione and The Maypole in Cambridge for kindly sponsoring the app.”
Cambridge United teamed up with picturepath to launch a new stadium visitor guide on the app last year.
The guide was designed to support fans with additional needs during visits to the Abbey stadium, and the software enables fans who would typically struggle in heightened sensory environments, such as sports stadia, to reduce sensory stress by seeing, planning and preparing for each stage of their matchday visit.