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Public launch of Purple Hound unleashes the potential of the purple pound

Yesterday saw the launch of Purple Hound www.purplehound.org.uk a new consumer brand that aims to promote best practice in accessibility and to highlight the champions that push the boundaries of what people can expect from inclusive products and services.

With national charity The British Polio Fellowship as launch partner, Purple Hound will contain articles and listings promoting best practice in accessibility across a number of market sectors, including hotels, restaurants, retail travel, stadia and many more. The phase one website launch today will be followed by a printed Purple Hound directory, set for publication in early 2017 with a mobile App to follow.  

“The British Polio Fellowship has been campaigning for greater disability access for several years now so we are delighted to be involved as launch partner of Purple Hound,” said CEO of The British Polio Fellowship Ted Hill, MBE. “This is the sort of guide our thousands of members have been crying out for and there has been a great deal of interest at Confex today. I am sure the launch of Purple Hound will be welcomed not just by thousands of our members, but millions more throughout the UK and beyond.”  

The Conference and Exhibition sector is an important market and as Confex is the flagship event for anyone involved in organising, running or selling events it was the perfect platform to tell delegates all about the new Purple Hound approach to promoting those businesses proud of their accessibility credentials.  

An estimated one in five people in the UK live with a disability and with a combined spending power of some £212 billion in the UK alone; neglecting the power of the purple pound people makes no business sense.  

“Purple Hound is the place where those who do recognise the value of customers with disabilities can have a chance to shout about it and consumers can promote those venues that go the extra mile to help,” added Ted. “The British Polio Fellowship has been at the forefront of campaigning for greater accessibility for the 120,000 people in the UK living with Post Polio Syndrome (PPS) for many years now and we know that something like Purple Hound to promote best practice and challenge discrimination is long overdue.”  

Purple Hound is designed to reflect the power of the ‘purple pound’ but why the disabled pound is purple is open to debate. The phrase purple pound is thought to have been coined by Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson, DBE. Usually associated with Royalty, the colour is synonymous with wealth and those with disabilities are an economic force to be reckoned with in the UK and from both an ethical and economic point of view, do not deserve to be lightly swept aside.  

Those businesses with poor access are turning away the custom of one in five people in the UK (minister for Disabled People Mark Harper, speaking on 27 August 2014). To put this in perspective, that is the populations of London, Birmingham, Leeds, Sheffield, Cardiff and Manchester combined.  

The phase one Purple Hound website at www.purplehound.org.uk is live now and registering is free for both consumers and potential advertisers. The developers are keen to engage with any interested parties who share the aim of giving a fair deal to the third of people with disabilities who still experience difficulties in accessing public, commercial and leisure goods and services. Phase one is aimed at seeking interest from interested groups and the second phase of the website in August will see the launch of the full service offering of Purple Hound, together with various services for members.  

Purple Hound has been developed in conjunction with charities and those members of the public most likely to use it and delivers the best deals and advice for where the purple pound can be spent.

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