VISITORS to an open day at Airedale Hospital this month will have the chance to try out a new 'interactive floor'.

The installation – designed to ease the anxiety of young patients – will form part of the hospital's new Emergency Department, due to open in the autumn.

The floor features a sound system and visual effects.

"Children can find coming into hospital – particularly in an emergency situation – quite frightening," said Meg Crossley, consultant in emergency medicine at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust.

"These new floors are an ideal tool for parents to entertain their child if he or she becomes agitated or distressed.”

Behind the product is Encompass the Ceilings, whose spokesman Allan Sinclair said: “The floors allow us to offer ‘fun’ events which help to distract youngsters from the immediate surroundings and create a less tense environment for all.

“From fish swimming and darting away when you try to touch them, to agility games that not only help movement but are great fun to do, we have creative solutions for all ages.”

The company will be raffling 50 T-shirts at the open day, which takes place in the hospital's education centre and a marquee on Thursday, August 21, from noon to 4pm.

The event will also feature over 60 stalls, demonstrations, a chance to try out equipment with the endoscopy team, ways to keep fit including hula hooping, and a 90ft cave run.

Free refreshments will be provided by Sodexo, the hospital’s catering company .

And free parking will be available.