Staff at SEA LIFE Blackpool – famous for its soothing and therapeutic displays of seahorses and other calming creatures – are launching a special ‘Quiet Hour’ for Children’s Mental Health Week.

The seafront aquarium, a popular destination for its relaxing and salutary experience, is opening its doors for free early this week for any children and young people and their carer.

From 9am to 10am, when the attraction normally opens, will become ‘Quiet Hour’ when youngsters can enjoy the beautiful and captivating surroundings in peaceful tranquillity.

Children’s Mental Health Week runs until Sunday, February 10th. Organised by Place2Be, a children’s mental health charity providing school-based support, the week aims to shine a spotlight on the importance of children and young people’s mental health.

To support the event, SEA LIFE Blackpool is offering free admission to any children and young people with mental health issues and their carer between 9am and 10am on Tuesday, February 5th, and Wednesday, February 6th, as well as on Saturday, February 9th, and Sunday, February 10th, and may extend it further depending on demand.

The initiative is also operating at SEA LIFE’s sister attraction, Madame Tussauds, just further along the Promenade, where children and young people can enjoy a range of celebrity and superhero figures, including the new Doctor Who exhibition, featuring Jody Whittaker, and the amazing Marvel superheroes interactive display.

Matthew Titherington, general manager of SEA LIFE Blackpool and Madame Tussauds, said: “Mental health and wellbeing among children and young people is a critical issue facing the UK today.  Pressures, such as pervasive social media and a desire to fit in during an ‘always-on, 24/7 world’ makes this issue more important than ever.

“We know visitors find out displays of beautiful sea creatures very calming and therapeutic. We’re pleased to take this step to support Children’s Mental Health Week. We’ll be opening both SEA LIFE and Madame Tussauds an hour early on these days and admission will be free for any children and young people with mental health issues and their carer.

“The aquarium will be quiet at that time and we’re aiming to create a tranquil and peaceful environment. Our staff will be on hand to guide and support visitors as well as to talk quietly about any of the creatures and answer any questions about them. We’ll also be doing the same at Madame Tussauds, which is also very popular among children and young people, for any who’d like to see the many wonderfully-realistic figures of celebrities and famous faces on display.”

Possibly the most serene creatures at SEA LIFE Blackpool are the sea horses whose delicate choreography captivates audiences at the popular aquarium. Other similarly enchanting creatures include friendly baby stingray, who look like they are smiling as they feed flat against the display glass, and Arial, the first baby blacktip shark successfully born and bred in the UK, as well as mesmerising fish, like clownfish and Orange Tails, along with beautiful and bioluminescent jellyfish and other species. Lulu, the giant sea turtle, is another favourite with children and young people, along with sharks and creatures from the hands-on educational displays, such as the rock pool and rainforest areas.

SEA LIFE Blackpool works closely with its charity partner, the Sea Life Trust, as part of its popular ‘breed, rescue, protect’ campaign, to develop and support ocean conservation projects worldwide, including threatened and endangered species, such as sea horses, turtles and sharks.

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