Andy Parnell of Hovertravel with visitors from Greenmount Community School

Hovertravel says it wants to become “more autistic-friendly”, and has enrolled the help of some of the Island’s primary school children.

As part of its HoverCare programme, the ferry firm recently welcomed a group of children and parents from Greenmount Community School in Ryde.

The children, parents and teachers were given a brief explanation of how the hovercraft works, along with a tour around one of the craft, and 15-minute trip out on the Solent.

Hovertravel’s HoverCare Ambassadors Andy Parnell said:

“When we launched HoverCare, we knew we needed to learn more about our customers’ needs. We appreciated that we should develop our knowledge of how different types of customer might view, access and experience our service.  The purposes of this visit were for Hovertravel get a better understanding of the needs of children, including those on the autistic spectrum, as well as incorporating parental feedback, and to give our all young visitors a behind the scenes tour of our hovercraft.”

Andy added:

“The response from this trip was overwhelmingly positive – from children, teachers and parents. My job is to feedback the intelligence we gathered through this event and then our HoverCare team can assess what we can do to make anyone with autism have the best possible experience with Hovertravel.”