Dolphin Centre encourages shoppers to tickle the ivories for Diverse Abilities

The Dolphin Shopping Centre in Poole has installed a new ‘piano for the people’ to help raise money for Diverse Abilities.

Members of the public are encouraged to play the piano and leave a small donation to Diverse Abilities. The piano is situated at the bottom of the escalators outside Beales department store and is available throughout the centre opening hours for children and adults of all abilities to play.


It is also designed to provide a fun, free activity for shoppers to take part in, and to encourage people to get engaged in live music.

John Grinnell, centre manager at the Dolphin Shopping Centre, commented: “Having a go at ‘tickling the ivories’ is a great way for our shoppers to get involved in fundraising for a fantastic local charity, and have a bit of fun at the same time.

“We are always looking for creative ways to help raise awareness of the fantastic work Diverse Abilities does locally, and we chose them as our nominated charity for 2019 because of the synergy with our continued focus on making the centre as accessible to everyone as possible.”

The piano has was launched by Dorset-based professional pianist Karen Lassy, who played a selection of music specially selected for Purple Tuesday, which aims to improve the customer experience for disabled people. Commenting on the ‘piano for the people’, Karen said:

“I’m so glad that there is now an acoustic piano in the Dolphin Centre for the general public! I think pianists of all ages and abilities are able to create an uplifting and relaxed atmosphere, which is especially handy in the run up to Christmas! More people are discovering that music also has therapeutic and healing qualities, and I can only hope that more shopping centres follow the Dolphin Centre’s lead.

“I feel very lucky to have been able to play the piano on Purple Tuesday, helping to raise some money and endorsing such a wonderful idea. Hats off to all the people who helped make it happen and provided the piano.”

Diverse Abilities, Dorset’s disability charity which supports children and adults with profound physical and learning disabilities, is the Dolphin Shopping Centre’s nominated ‘Charity of the Year’ for 2019. For more information about the Dolphin Shopping Centre, visit