Britain’s joint hottest summer on record may now have passed, but a giant 50-foot artificial sun is being installed at intu Merry Hill on Thursday 27 September in a bid to extend the summer and make people happier.
The glowing, bright orange sphere which took 12 weeks to build, has a 15-metre circumference and shines as brightly as 12,000 lightbulbs. Its installation follows intu’s happiness survey, which reveals that four in five people in the West Midlands (84 per cent) feel happier when it’s sunny. The artificial sun has been modelled on a photograph captured by NASA and will be shining inside intu Merry Hill and going on a tour of 11 intu centres across the country as part of the shopping centre owner’s pledge to make shoppers smile. According to the intu Happiness Survey, nearly a third of people in the West Midlands (31 per cent) say 2018 has been their happiest summer in memory despite the economic uncertainty, with two in five (41 per cent) crediting the sunshine for their increased happiness levels. The research from intu also revealed that over two-thirds of people living in the UK (69 per cent) feel happier in the summer than they do in the winter, with sunshine (27 per cent), longer days (24 per cent), summer holidays (16 per cent) and more outdoor activity (15 per cent) the top reasons given. 80 per cent say the much needed summer rays also make them feel healthier.
Robert Pickersgill, Marketing Manager at intu Merry Hill, comments: “The weather forecast this week at intu Merry Hill is guaranteed to be ‘sunny’ so shoppers are encouraged to take a pair of sunglasses with them when they visit! We know that people feel happier when it’s sunny and after a glorious summer we wanted to extend the sunshine and create something sunny for our shoppers. At intu Merry Hill we have something for everyone, so whether you’re on a shopping spree or just want to sit back and enjoy the sun, we have you covered.”