The Guildhall Shopping Centre is very happy to announce the official opening of their indoor infants and toddler family garden on the first floor above Sainsburys in the Guildhall.

This space has been born out of the need for community spaces in the city centre that are safe, sheltered from the rain and interactive for families and carers of young children.

The space has thick fake grass and is 8 metres by 10 metres, it’s accessible but a little tucked away from crowds. It was some stimulating wall toys for children who are discovering their senses and developing their playing style such as large trees with bead counters. It also has a huge wooden duck and bright coloured cubes for the children to play on safely.

Image: Moments to Media

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Thought has been taken into the comfort of the parents and carers too, with pallet seating around the edge and a mains fed water machine at the one corner of the area. The aim of this space is to allow parents and carers to bring their smaller children for a little run around while they have a rest or enjoy a beverage. There are also welcome to bring snacks/lunch into the area as there are ample bins provided and the space is regularly checked.

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There is a feedback QR code in the area and so far the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive with one parent commenting:

‘This area is amazing, it’s just what is needed, and I wish their where more in the city. It can be so expensive to go to a café every time you want to have a coffee, especially when your toddler is sick of being in the pushchair so being able to grab a takeaway coffee from Wilko and sit here is a god send and my kiddie loves it!’ – Ann Simpson, Heavitree

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Another:

‘I’ve brought my little boy to have a run around while mum pops into Primark and we have loved being here’ - Jamie Bagwell, Whipton

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In 2022, we plan to host drop in music and story telling sessions in the week as well as groups focused on Dads as we acknowledge that this something that is desperately needed in Exeter and surrounds.

The space is open 7 days a week, 8am-7pm Monday-Saturday and 10am-4pm Sunday. It is also open for late night shopping. It is located on the first floor, above Sainsburys and has both lift and stair access. It is also in close proximity to the baby feeding and changing are and the public toilets.

Image: Moments to Media

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Baby feeding unit

The Guildhall Shopping Centre is also proud to announce the opening of our new baby nursing and feeding pop-up unit in the centre!

We have taken an empty unit on the first floor and turned it into two dedicated spaces for parents and carers of babies to use. We appreciate that some people seek our private and quiet places where they can feed their babies and know that this can be very complicated when out in public spaces where noise and distraction is at a maximum level. 

The Guildhall Shopping Centre will remain a place where mothers are always welcome to breastfeed in any of our communal areas but for those parents, mothers and fathers, who choose to do it in private - this space is an oasis for them to come to.

The two areas within the Nursing and feeding area have been decorated with local scenes including Dawlish Beach and Dartmoor in panoramic wrap around view with the idea that it relaxes the occupant and allows them to calmly tend to their baby. There is space dedicated for buggy parking, and a large sofa to accommodate up to two people. There is also a curtain to offer additional privacy and hand sanitiser points.

The unit has been created in partnership with Exeter Babies, who’s founder, Jen Harris, runs the well known Nappiccino baby group at Lady Smith school for parents of infants who need support for anything from reusable nappies to breast feeding support.

Related

The Guildhall Shopping Centre
Independent Shop
The Guildhall Shopping Centre, Exeter

From fashion to food, to booking that perfect family holiday, everything you need can be found at Guildhall Shopping Centre, being home to brands such as Sainsbury’s, Wilko, Primark, WH Smith, Superdrug, Mothercare and Jigsaw, amongst others. Whilst shopping, don’t forget to check out the eight new restaurants at Queen St Dining!

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