People young and old who may be at risk of wandering off at a Hartlepool shopping centre are being given the chance to stay safe thanks to a new scheme.
Middleton Grange Shopping Centre has launched its Shopper Safe initiative - which aims to support visitors who may be at risk of wandering off and their parents, guardians or carers by providing free wrist bands and support.
Charities in the area have been consulted over the programme and it’s hoped it will reduce the number of incidents when people get lost from their families while having a day out at the site.
Mark Rycraft, centre manager at Middleton Grange, explained how the scheme’s wristbands will help those who are at risk of wandering off and getting lost whilst they are shopping at the centre.
Mark said: “When a parent, guardian or carer arrives at the centre they can collect a wrist band from customer services, write their contact details on it and then attach it to the child or adult they are caring for.
“Then, if the child or adult wanders off and gets lost, it is easy for our security team to identify them and contact the relevant responsible adult.”
He added: “We have consulted with local charities and support groups as well as our shoppers when creating this scheme.
“We have been told that for a lot of people - including those who have dementia - this will offer comfort and peace of mind, making their shopping trip a more relaxing experience.”
The wrist bands are available now from the customer services desk at Middleton Grange - which is on the second floor of the centre.