Scottish Premiership football club Celtic has opened a sensory room at Celtic Park to cater for children or young people with auditory, visual or sensory disorders.
The Lions’ View Sensory Room will be based in Celtic Park’s Lisbon Lions Stand and overlook the pitch. It will feature a soundproof viewing area for 15 people, as well as state-of-the-art equipment designed to create a calm environment for fans.
The space will give children and young people the chance to learn and develop in real-world scenarios, including those typically encountered in a football environment, while catering for their needs and any sensitivities they have.
Peter and Kate Shippey, founders of The Shippey Campaign, which advocates for the implementation of sensory rooms in football stadia across the UK, said: “Celtic FC Foundation’s Sensory Room will be a welcome addition of significant benefit to many supporters, who up until now may have struggled, or not been able to watch live football inside the stadium.
“It has been a pleasure to support Celtic FC Foundation throughout this development, and we will continue to support them going forward.”
Celtic said the demand for the service will likely outstrip supply and as a result its foundation will prioritise participants from the club’s own projects, including Ability Counts. Additional spaces will be made available for children and young people not currently involved with the Foundation’s project delivery.
Celtic added that it anticipates the space becoming multi-purpose, with greater access on non-matchdays for participants living with dementia and Down’s Syndrome, as well as other groups.
The space opened for the first time for Celtic’s home match against Livingston on Saturday.
A number of major league teams in the US have recently opened similar spaces at their stadia and arenas as they seek to provide a more inclusive experience on game days.
Image: Guillaume Gogo