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Notts County and Chesterfield open sensory rooms for autistic fans

Notts County and Chesterfield have become the latest clubs to provide sensory facilities for autistic fans.

Notts County have converted 4 executive suites into 3 sensory rooms, furnished with soft toys, bubble tubes and ear defenders, which will allow autistic fans to enjoy matches at Meadow Lane in a comfortable and relaxing environment. 

The club completed training with Autism East Midlands as part of developing the sensory rooms and has pledged to become an autism-friendly club by signing the Autism Charter.

They also worked closely with the charity Shippey Campaign, who were instrumental in the first dedicated sensory room for autistic football fans at Sunderland in 2015 and who provided expert guidance and support in developing these facilities.

Elsewhere, Chesterfield FC are inviting autistic fans to attend their next home fixture in a ‘pop-up’ sensory room.

The Spireites take on Northampton Town on the 17 September where an executive box will be converted into a sensory room for the game, organised by the Chesterfield FC Community Trust, in partnership with Accessible Derbyshire.

There are a limited number of places available in the sensory room, which are free of charge and include a buffet. Anyone interested in booking places should email or phone Gillian Scotford on 01246 419377.

Speaking about these latest developments, Kate and Peter Shippey of the Shippey Campaign said: 


“We are thrilled that clubs are understanding the need and beginning to develop these facilties. Many families affected with sensory difficulties wouldn’t think of venturing into a stadium and now it’s becoming a dream come true for thousands of people.”

“We are delighted that our concept has opened a door for so many people and we are continuing as a charity to ensure that this access for people with sensory difficulties becomes standard in sport stadia everywhere. In conclusion, we, at The Shippey Campaign (reg. charity no. 1166989) are very proud that our idea for the installation of sensory viewing rooms in sporting stadia is being listened too, & provision is now being made for people to be able to watch a ‘live’ match in a suitable & comfortable environment.”


BBC News

Chesterfield FC

The Shippey Campaign