A children’s play centre in Manchester has come under fire for preventing parents from taking in sugary drinks for their diabetic children.
Play Factore in the Trafford Quays Leisure Village told a group of mums that their kids could only enter if they left their cartons of apple juice outside.
One of the mums, 37 year old Jayne Fletcher, stressed that the drinks were needed to treat problems that could arise as a result of the boys’ type 1 diabetes. She explained that quick and easy access to sugary drinks was necessary in case the three children, aged 5, 7 and 10 years, suffered a hypo (drop in blood sugar) while playing.
But despite her best efforts, staff at the centre said both parents and their kids could only use drinks purchased there.
Jayne and her friends Lucy Marsh and Joanne Taylor reluctantly left the drinks behind and entered the play area but have now decided to make a formal complaint over the centre’s food and drink policy.
She said: “We take these little cartons of juice everywhere and have never had a problem before. Even when we explained the juice was just for the boys’ diabetes we were told we would have to leave it outside.
“If a child was asthmatic I’m sure they wouldn’t take away an inhaler. Diabetes may be a disability you can’t see but a food and drink policy shouldn’t take precedent.”
Defending Play Factore’s policy, Alex Riley, deputy manager, said: “The customer understood the food and drink policies and recognised that this was a purchase issue not an issue of discrimination. Ms Marsh paid to enter Play Factore under these terms and conditions and stayed for a duration of over two hours with her friends and son.”
He added: “At Play Factore we gladly appreciate customer feedback however on this occasion we feel barraged by social media posts including misinformation that implies our operation is discriminating when we have actively facilitated to these serious dietary requirements with alternative food and drink.
“We appreciate that the customer is a supporter of those suffering with diabetes and we fully respect her opinions.”

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