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Launching ‘Dementia-friendly Sidmouth’

  • by JW

Making an ‘age-friendly Sidmouth’



When it comes to dealing with the specific issue of dementia in the Sid Valley, there are several initiatives under way.

As announced today, dementia support books are now available at local libraries in East Devon, including Sidmouth:

Carol Pentecost from Sidmouth Library said: “‘United’ is by local author Gina Awad. The book addresses the issue of dementia relating to family carers. It’s an easy read and the illustrations make it a friendly book. It’s a welcome addition to our new Reading Well on Dementia booklist available now.”

Keith Oliver, from the not-for-profit CIC Innovations in Dementia, said: “Reading other people’s lived experience, both as a family carer and as a person with dementia, does help you to know that you’re not alone. There’s also the reassurance that everyone’s experience is different. So you learn about similarities from these books, but also you draw some strength from the fact that you’re different.”

Indeed, there are all sorts of initiatives to help both those with dementia and those caring for people affected by dementia – including the excellent Sid Valley Memory Café | Every Wednesday at Twyford House in Sidmouth. And in just over a fortnight’s time, the Memory Café and the Town Council will be launching Dementia Friendly Sidmouth:

The launch event will take place at Kennaway House on Saturday 1st June. Drop in and share your views so that Sidmouth can become an outstanding dementia friendly community. Free refreshments will be available.

At the launch you can visit the virtual dementia tour, enabling you to walk in the shoes of someone with dementia.

Dementia Friendly Sidmouth is funded by Sid Valley Memory Cafe and supported by Sidmouth Hospice at Home, Sid Valley Help and Sidmouth Town Council

Finally, there is a lot practical and moral support available – signposting Memory Loss & Dementia from Sid Valley Help


Dementia is an all-too common aspect of ageing and needs to be addressed – and is very much part of our ageing population.

Looking at the even bigger picture, the question was raised on these pages earlier in the year, of whether Sidmouth is an ‘age friendly’ community – together with a proposal on how we might be preparing further for an ageing population:

It may be that communities in Sidmouth may benefit from ‘age friendly’ recognition in ways claimed by the Centre for Ageing Better which include: opportunities to widen participation across generations in addressing issues associated with an ageing community; providing a strategic framework for reviewing key domains of outdoor spaces, transport, housing, social and civic participation, communication, community health and well-being.

To finish, here is a vision for an age-friendly city from John Gunson of Torbay and Centre for Ageing Better.