Wiltshire Publications

Heywood Café celebrates five years

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Wiltshire’s first memory café has celebrated its fifth birthday.

The Alzheimer café at Heywood near Westbury opened in July 2009 and was the first in the county to offer a place for people with dementia and their family members to meet for information and informal support.

It has met each month since, for a buffet supper and live music, talks by specialists in dementia and informal support from professionals.  It is run by Wiltshire charity Alzheimer’s Support and funded by Wiltshire Council.

Elizabeth Robbins of Warminster said,  “My husband David has short term memory loss due to vascular dementia and we have been going to the café since its inception.

“It has been a great way to meet others coping with similar problems in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere with varied refreshments and an informative talk, often with musicians providing a tuneful background. We are all very grateful to Alzheimer’s Support for providing this facility.”

More than 50 people attended the birthday café which featured live music by seven-piece folk band Raggle Taggle, and a barbecue.

Anna Littlechild, chief executive of Alzheimer’s Support said, “We are delighted that five years on, our first café is still providing a place where people can feel comfortable to talk about living with dementia, enjoy a social evening out and gain useful information. It is one of many services that we offer to help reduce the stigma that has surrounded dementia.”

Alzheimer’s Support now also runs cafes in Melksham and East Grafton, while the Alzheimer’s Society runs similar events in Salisbury and Chippenham.

To find out more see www.alzheimerswiltshire.org.uk