Charity launches a new campaign to take noise off the menu - Action On Hearing Loss: RNID
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Charity launches a new campaign to take noise off the menu

Posted on 06/07/2016

Eight out of ten people have left a restaurant, café or pub early because of the noise according to a new survey from Action on Hearing Loss with the charity today launching a nation-wide campaign for a quieter dining experience.

The charity’s Speak Easy campaign is calling on the catering industry to take action on background noise.

The online poll that surveyed both people with and without hearing loss showed that 81% of respondents had difficulty holding a conversation because of the high level of environmental noise. They were also united (91%) in saying that they will not make a return visit to a place where the noise levels were too high.

The high level of background noise, which includes noise made by other diners, noise from the kitchen and background music was also responsible for over a quarter (27%) of all respondents receiving the wrong order during a meal out.

The problem is exacerbated by recent interior design trends that have seen venues employ industrial, minimalist aesthetics with lots of hard surfaces and high ceilings, which have led to increased noise levels due to a lack of furnishings that absorb sound.

Paul Breckell, Chief Executive Action on Hearing Loss says: ‘Through our campaign we want to help the restaurant, café and pub industry to create a more welcoming dining experience for all customers. Whether you’re out for a meal with friends, or if you’re on a date you should be able to enjoy it without having to repeat yourself, raise your voice or receive the wrong order due to high levels of background noise.

‘There are 11 million of people in the UK with hearing loss so, financially, it’s a no-brainer for the industry to help make dining out even more enjoyable and accessible. Three-quarters of people believe that restaurants, cafés and pubs have become louder in the last five years and we look forward to working with the catering industry to help take noise off the menu.’

ENDS

Contact for media enquiries:
Gorki Duhra, Senior PR Officer, telephone: 020 7296 8057, out of hours: 07944 038 635 or email: gorki.duhra@hearingloss.org.uk. Follow Action on Hearing Loss on Twitter @hearinglosspr

Notes to Editors:

  • The report, Speak Easy: Hearing the views of your customers is available under embargo
  • The report’s companion guide, Speak Easy: How to improve the customer experience, details the practical steps that restaurants, cafés and bars can take to reduce background noise: 
  • The survey polled 1, 461 people between October and November 2015, across the UK – A full breakdown of the people surveyed is available upon request
  • Action on Hearing Loss spokespeople and case studies are available for interview upon request, with a range of infographics/images
  • Action on Hearing Loss helps people to confront deafness, tinnitus and hearing loss to live the life they choose. Action on Hearing Loss enables them to take control of their lives and remove the barriers in their way. Action on Hearing Loss gives people support and care, develop technology and treatments, and campaign for equality.



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