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Autism - an out of this world experiment, in Kent

A pioneering experimental play and drama scheme in Folkestone, is helping those children who have autism. A recreation of a space pod, with puppets, light and sound, encourages the youngsters to communicate.

Kevin Harrison's report includes interviews with Rolan Rouse who has been using the space pod, Dr Melissa Trimingham from the University of Kent, and the Assistant Headteacher of the Beacon School where the project is based, Lynda Evans.

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Autistic boy's family 'reaching breaking point'

The mother of an autistic boy says he has been deprived of almost three years of education, because of a lack of suitable schooling - and now the family is reaching breaking point. Fred and Stacey introduce our coverage.

Supermarket first in the country to introduce 'quiet hour' for autistic shoppers

More and more of our children are being diagnosed as autistic. Thirty years ago, it was considered a relatively rare condition affecting around one in 500, but now that figure stands at one in every 100.

Much of that could be down to better awareness - but its cause is still a mystery. However, it leaves a generation of children and their parents struggling with the sensory overload of modern life.

Now some respite is now being offered in perhaps the most unlikely of places - a supermarket in Crawley is going out of its way to help.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to Emma Castle, who's son Oliver has autism, Abi Smith, Emma Holdsworth and Raj Sivalingam, as well as supermarket manager Gary Powis and Jo-Ann D'Costa Manuel of Autism Parent Power.

Santa's special gift to children with autism

With Christmas just a month away, a visit to Santa's grotto will be on many families' list of festive treats.

But for children with autism it can become a stressful experience, with too much noise and bustle.

Now, one mother from Sussex has developed a special autism-friendly grotto, and the idea is being rolled out nationwide.

Malcolm Shaw spoke to Jo-Ann D'Costa-Manuel of Autism Parent Empower, Mark Haynes of County Mall Crawley, and Sharon Watt from Desmond Anderson Primary School.

Autism story transformed for the big screen

A man who's spent his life campaigning for autism awareness is having his story of growing up with the condition transformed for the big screen.

The short film follows Kevin Healey's struggles with bullying, his obsessions, and his family's battle to get a diagnosis.

People from across the UK, many with difficulties and disabilities of their own, have auditioned for a part. Charlotte Cross went to meet them.

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