UXBRIDGE’S intu centre is one of the first in the country to back the sunflower lanyard scheme, to provide more help for visitors with hidden disabilities.

People with invisible conditions can collect and wear a lanyard from customer service desks to signal they may need more support during their visit.

It will act as a discreet sign to staff that the wearer could require a little more time with finding their way around a store or getting access to a quiet space or toilets, due to conditions such as autism, dementia or diabetes.

The initiative has been introduced ahead of Purple Tuesday on Tuesday, November 12, a day devoted to the needs of disabled shoppers.