Manchester City has become the latest English Premier League club to open a sensory room at its stadium.
Situated in the north-east corner of Etihad Stadium, the space has been specially designed for children with sensory issues that may have discouraged them and their families from attending a match.
The sensory room offers a full, unrestricted view of the pitch, creating a safe and controlled environment to watch the game, with optional, additional seating in the stadium bowl also available for those who want to spend time experiencing the match in the crowd.
The sensory space will be in use throughout the season on matchdays and also for City in the Community to deliver sessions to participants on non-matchdays.
During the first four home games of the 2019-20 season, City invited families to trial the space to ensure it was ready to effectively handle their requirements, with the club’s access team liaising with them before, during and after each match.
The club said that the feedback was “overwhelmingly positive”, with the home game against Aston Villa on October 26 marking the official opening of the sensory room to fans.
“After a period of successful trials we are delighted to open a sensory room at the Etihad Stadium,” City’s operations director Danny Wilson said.
“The positive feedback we received means we know that this is a space which will help those with sensory processing issues enjoy their experience without the sometimes-overwhelming sounds, sights and crowds of a usual matchday.
“Opening this space is a big step for us to continue our long-standing mission of ensuring football is inclusive for all. We hope that the offer of this quiet space within the stadium will encourage those who might not usually attend a game to do so, knowing that the club will be with them every step of the way to ensure they can be a part of the matchday experience.”
Several Premier League clubs already have sensory rooms, including Wolverhampton Wanderers, which opened its facility last month.
Image: Cléria De Souza