• 7 Things you didn't know about dementia

    7 things you didn't know about dementia

    Set to be the biggest killer of the 21st century - yet research is underfunded


    dementia understanding communicate supportMany families are affected by dementia. The condition is set to become the biggest killer of the 21st century - someone develops dementia every three minutes, and too many are facing it alone without adequate support. Here are some facts and figures about dementia:

    1. Dementia is an umbrella term

    Dementia describes different brain disorders that trigger a loss of brain function. These conditions are all usually progressive and eventually severe. Alzheimer's disease is the most common type of dementia, affecting 62 per cent of those diagnosed. Other types of dementia include; vascular dementia affecting 17 per cent of those diagnosed, mixed dementia affecting 10 per cent of those diagnosed, frontotemporal dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies.

    Symptoms of dementia include memory loss, confusion and problems with speech and understanding. Dementia is a terminal condition.

    2. Dementia isn’t a natural part of ageing

    Dementia doesn’t care who you are and can affect anyone. It’s caused by diseases of the brain which includes Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia affects everyone differently. Someone with the condition might experience a number of changes including problems with memory, thinking, concentration and language. It mainly affects people over the age of 65 however there are more than 42,000 people under 65 living with dementia in the UK.

    3. Dementia is a progressive condition but with support people can continue to live well

    Dementia is progressive, meaning that symptoms gradually get worse. However, many people living with dementia lead active and fulfilling lives for many years. There are many ways to help support someone living with dementia from becoming a Dementia Friend, gaining a better understanding of the condition, to volunteering with Alzheimer’s Society’s Side by Side service. The charity is for everyone affected by dementia, to find out more about local services or volunteering visit

    4. By 2021, one million of us will have dementia

    There are 850,000 people in the UK who have a form of dementia, of which an estimated 3,800 live in the New Forest, 19,000 in Hampshire. Dementia has replaced heart diseases as the leading cause of death in England and Wales, accounting for 11.6% of all deaths registered in 2015, according to the Office for National Statistics. Dementia is set to be the 21st century’s biggest killer, with someone developing it every three minutes.

    Only around 50% of those with dementia in Hampshire have been diagnosed - so there are lots of people with dementia who are not getting support and treatment that could help them and their families.

    5. There is no cure for dementia

    Delaying the onset of dementia by five years would halve the number of deaths from the condition, saving 30,000 lives a year. Of the top 10 causes of death, dementia is the only one we can’t prevent, cure or even slow down, but funding of dementia research is still far too low. Research is continuing into new drugs, vaccines and other medical treatments. Drugs do exist for Alzheimer’s disease which can improve symptoms or temporarily slow progression, in some people. There are no licensed drug treatments for other forms of dementia.

    6. Dementia research is underfunded

    Dementia research is desperately underfunded. For every person living with dementia, the annual cost to the UK economy is over £30,000 and yet only £90 is spent on dementia research each year.

    Alzheimer’s Society is committed to spending at least £150 million over the next decade on dementia research including a £50 million investment in the UK’s first dedicated Dementia Research Institute.

    7. We can beat dementia through research

    Alzheimer’s Society provides information and support, improves care, funds research, and creates lasting change for people affected by dementia. The charity is investing in research into dementia care, cause, cure and prevention of all types of dementia. Dementia devastates lives. The Alzheimer’s Society needs people to unite against dementia now. Whether you choose to donate, volunteer or campaign, every action makes a difference.


    Visit to find out more about dementia and how you can help.

    Find out more information about dementia support in Lymington and the New Forest

  • Art Dementia New Forest

    Art Dementia New Forest

    New local charity takes on local art groups aimed at those living with dementia

    art therapy for people living with dementiaThe Arts Groups which the Alzheimer’s Society started in 2007 are based in Milford on Sea, Lymington and Ringwood. They have been an amazing success and give tremendous pleasure not only to the artists but also their families, friends and all concerned. The production of cards, calendars and art exhibitions has sent out some positive messages that there is a life after diagnosis of dementia and that life-long learning, well-being and inclusion is all important.

    Art and culture holds a unique place in our lives. Whether it's singing, poetry, museums or dance, they enrich our lives and bring pleasure to everybody at some point. This is no different for people with dementia and researchers have therefore begun to develop an increasing interest in the arts, aiming to find evidence as to how and why they may be able to help people with dementia.

    Art Dementia New Forest is a new charity who have now taken over the local art groups, constituted under the “small charities commission.” The charity is going from strength to strength and wants people with dementia to be part of an art group just like anyone else.

    Fortunate in being able to participate in the New Forest Show, in 2016 two of the artists were awarded a bronze and silver medal for their superb paintings.

    Fundraising by Art Dementia New Forest will be continuous and any help would be welcomed. The charity aims to keep the highest quality standards and it is of the utmost importance that these are maintained. If anyone would like to consider volunteering - a rewarding and fun thing to do, do get in touch.

    For more information about the Art Groups, please contact Gilda Newsham MBE, Secretary, Art Dementia New Forest on 01425 473777.


    • Milford-on-Sea Dementia Art Group is held every other Monday morning at Milford on Sea Community Centre, 9 Sea Road, Milford-on-Sea SO41 0PH
    • Lymington Dementia Art Group is held every other Monday morning at Linden House care home, New Street, Lymington SO41 9BP
    • Ringwood Dementia Art Group takes place every Thursday morning, from 10am-12noon at Trinity Centre, Christchurch Road, Ringwood BH24 1DH


  • Cage Cricket for people living with dementia

    Cage cricket for people living with dementia.

    Coming soon to the Lymington area

    Cage CricketLymington Dementia Action Group are currently looking at organising Cage Cricket for people living with dementia.

    Cage Cricket allows for everybody, regardless of experience, ability, background or physical condition to take part. The game adapts to those playing, can be played inside or out, and lasts for no longer than an hour. Cage Cricket gives the chance for people to work together, to learn from one another, to help and encourage each other and to create new friendships.

    Cage CricketSessions so far, run in Hampshire and in Surrey, have trailed games solely for those living with dementia, but also games for 50+ which were inclusive of those living with dementia.

    Dementia Friendly Hampshire have teamed buddies up with the participants to aid with mobility issues and also as prompts for positioning during play and scoring as required. These buddies also added greatly to the sense of inclusion of the players!

    Cage cricket for dementia sufferersAnother aspect we hope to start exploring this summer is that of teams comprising family members. So often younger members of a family find it difficult to maintain relationships with grandparents when they have dementia, we would hope that pairing grandchildren as buddies for grandparents may provide a valuable new relationship which can be built on for other activities.

    For more information and to be kept updated, please get in touch with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    Jane Ward from Dementia Friendly Hampshire



  • Dementia - information resources

    Dementia Matters - Useful Contacts

    Published information, resources and help for people in Lymington and the local area who need information about dementia 

    Alzheimer's Society

    Alzheimer's Society is the UK's leading dementia charity which provides information and support for people affected by dementia as well as working behind the scenes to improve care and fund research.  Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Advice Service run by the Alzheimer’s Society across the New Forest on behalf of Hampshire County Council for people with dementia, their carers, family and friends, is a consistent point of contact and support from when you receive your first diagnosis and then throughout your journey with dementia.

    The dementia advice service can help you if you’ve just been told you have dementia in which case you may feel frightened and unsure about what the future holds.  It will help you by making sure you have the information you need to help you to continue living the life you want for as long as possible, and prepare you, your relatives, carers and friends for the journey ahead.  It will also help by listening to you and answering your specific questions, helping you identify what information you need and how to find it, and helping you to access the services you need to plan for the future.

    The local New Forest contact is Vivien Walker who can be reached as follows:

    Mobile phone: 07484 092551 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Or if preferred you can contact Viv via the Alzheimer's Society office landline telephone, on 02380 610173.

    A number of Alzheimer's Society New Forest  support and activity groups meet regularly in Milford on Sea, Hythe and Fordingbridge: ask Viv about these or you can also go to and click on category "Dementia Friendly".

    Age Concern Hampshire

    An independent charity, working on behalf of older people across the county.

    For more information, call free on 0800 328 7154 (Monday-Friday 10am-3pm) or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

    Age Concern New Forest

    Provides various services within the New Forest, Waterside and Totton areas for local elderly residents. Supporting local older people.

    Age Concern New Forest, Southward House, 2 Beaulieu Road, Dibden Purlieu, Southampton SO45 4PT

    Tel: 023 8084 1199 or freephone 0800 085 6625

    Alzheimer's Society Dementia Friends 

    The BOBBY Scheme

    Providing home safety and security for the vulnerable and the elderly in our communities. A registered charity which provides a free home safety and security survey to assess the work needed to make the client’s home safe and secure.

    Tel: 0300 777 0157 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Community First, New Forest

    A council for Voluntary Service that supports and promotes the professionalism and diverse activities of the voluntary and community sector across the New Forest and surrounding districts. Alongside this key role they also provide a range of essential services that meet local needs. Offices open: 9am-5pm Monday to Thursday and 9am-4.30pm Friday

    Community First New Forest, Archstone House, Pullman Business Park, Pullman Way, Ringwood BH24 1HD

    Tel: 01425 461751

    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Home Support Service - Community First, New Forest

    Tel: 01425 482773 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Community Independence Team

    Support for people over 55 who are experiencing difficulties in maintaining their independence and who may be finding it harder to manage around the home or cope with everyday activities.

    • CIT West (Ringwood office) 01425 482751
    • CIT West(Lymington office) 01590 625112
    • CIT West (Hythe office) 023 8087 9877
    • CIT West (Tatchbury office) 023 8087 4028

    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    You can also get in touch through Hampshire County Council’s Contact Centre on 0845 603 5630

    Dementia Friendly Communities (New Forest)

    Jane Ward: 07557 653229 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Dementia UK

    Dementia Uk, Resource for London, Second Floor, 356 Holloway Road, London N7 6PA

    Provide Admiral Nurses, specialist dementia nurses who give practical and emotional support to families affected by dementia.

    Tel: 020 7697 4160

    E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Admiral Nursing direct helpline- for questions about dementia or if you need help and support from an Admiral Nurse.

    Tel: 0845 257 9406 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Emergency Planning for Carers

    A dedicated team will provide you with support to discuss, develop and implement an emergency plan. Up to 48 hrs free care may be available for the person you care for in the event of an emergency. A free service and no Adult Services assessment is needed - Emergency Planning For Carers is funded by Hampshire County Council and provided by The Princess Royal Trust for Carers In Hampshire.

    Tel: 0845 604 1577

    Hampshire Adult Services

    Adult social care information: 0845 603 5630

    Hampshire Partnership NHS Trust Self Referral Memory Clinic

    Over 60 years of age.

    The Becton Centre. Older People’s Mental Health Centre

    The Fairway, Barton-On-Sea, New Milton BH25 7AE

    Tel: 01425 623802

    Helping Older People, New Forest 

    We are dedicated to supporting older people in the community, particularly those who are isolated or vulnerable. Our central aim is to improve the quality of life for thousands of people locally, helping them to retain their independence safely and with dignity and to get the most out of life. We also promote the role of older people as active citizens.

    Mon, Weds and Fri 10am-2pm

    Tel: 01425 629009 (out of hours answer phone) or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

    HCC Dementia Adviser Service Drop-in Support

    Available for people with any type of dementia and for their carers and families. Contact 023 9289 2034. Local Groups:

    • Ringwood Library, Christchurch Road,Ringwood BH24 1DW, held on the 1st Wednesday of the month 10am to 12 noon, starting 5th February 2014. Call your local Alzheimer’s Society office on 02392 892035 for more information.
    • Milford-On-Sea Library, Village Hall, Park Road, Milford-On-Sea, SO41 0QU, held on the 4th Tuesday of every month 2.30pm-4.30pm, starting Tuesday 28th January 2014.Call your local Alzheimer’s Society office on 01590 644679 for more information.
    • New Milton Library, Gore Road, New Milton, BH25 6RW, held on the 2nd Thursday of every month 10am-12 noon, starting Thursday 9th January 2014.Call your local Alzheimer’s Society office on 01590 644679 for more information.
    • A.R Pharmacy, 3 Hazel Road, Totton, SO40 8WU, held on the last Thursday of the month 9.30am to 11.30am. Call your local Alzheimer’s Society office on 07590 417363 for more information.
    • At Age Concern, Southward House, Beaulieu Road, Dibden Purlieu SO45 4PT, held on the 1st Tuesday of the month 10am to 12 noon. Call your local Alzheimer’s Society office on 02392 892035 for more information.

    Lymington Care Group

    Transport to hospitals, doctors and other medical appointments. Also to visit family and friends in hospitals and nursing homes.

    Tel: 01590 679187

    Lymington Dementia Action Group

    Ian Erridge: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Milford on Sea Dementia Action Group

    Jane Rowlatt: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 01590 645304


    Helpline: 0300 1233393

    New Forest Carers Forum

    Contact Vicky Hamilton Vey at Fenwick2 on 023 8028 6342 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    New Forest Disability

    Providing free, confidential, impartial disability related information,advice and guidance throughout the New Forest and surrounding areas.

    Head Office and Shop: 6 Osborne Road, New Milton BH25 6AD

    Helpline: 01425 628750 - Adminline: 01425 623485

    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

    New Milton Dementia Group

    Susan Wiffen: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    NHS Choices

    Office of the Public Guardian

    The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) protects people in England and Wales who may not have the mental capacity to make certain decisions for themselves, such as about their health and finance.

    Older People's Area Link

    Run by Age Concern Hampshire. A joint partnership between Hampshire County Council Older People’s Well-Being Team, Age Concern Hampshire and Good Neighbour Support Service Hampshire. OPAL is a countrywide service that can provide you with details of local information and services by phone. If you need a little more help in working out what you want, there are OPAL volunteers in your area who can visit you at home.

    Call freephone 0800 328 7154 

    SCA Group (social enterprise)

    Provides a range of not for profit, community based health and social care services.This includes community care and support, day care, NHS dentistry, advocacy and community transport.

    SCA Head Office, Amplevine House, Dukes Road, Southampton SO14 0ST

    Tel: 023 8036 6663

    SCA Advocacy: 07739 951715

    SCA Fenwick 2 Wellbeing Centre

    Lyndhurst Health and Wellbeing Centre-Receive care, make friends, enjoy lots of activities and give you a welcome break, for those caring for someone with Memory Loss or Dementia. 

    Tel: 023 8028 2862 Mon 8.30am-6.00 pm

    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Social Care Institute For Excellence

    Dementia Gateway: this is for anyone who wants to understand dementia better. Dementia Gateway has an enormous selection of helpful resources, including written information, films, activities, e-learning and a lot more.

    Tel: 020 7535 0900 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Southern Health NHS (Memory Matters Courses)

    Courses for carers and patients are separate, but both are a good opportunity to meet people who are in similar situations.


  • Dementia Friends Information

    Dementia Friends Information Sessions

    People with dementia don’t just lose their memories; they can also lose their friends. This is because people with dementia can start to behave differently. And sometimes those friends might not understand or know how to react.  However, it is possible to live well with dementia, especially with the support of friends. No matter how big, or how small, every action counts.  That’s because people with dementia need friends more than ever.

    Dementia Friends BadgeThat’s why the Department of Health has committed to creating one million Dementia Friends, who will help people with dementia to live well for longer.  The Lymington Dementia Action Group has trained Dementia Friend Champions who provide one-hour information sessions to businesses, organisations and individuals within Lymington

    Anybody can become a friend. It’s as simple as just understanding a bit more about dementia. We will give you helpful tips and small ideas to help you support the people you know with dementia and their carers.  Plus, you will even get a free badge :-)

    To find out about booking your own session (for example if you are a business wanting to train your staff) please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will endeavour to meet your preferred date, time and venue.

    For more information about the Friends sessions please watch the below video: 

    The following schools have information sessions run for the pupils to raise awareness of dementia amongst children:

    • Lymington Junior School
    • Milford on Sea Primary
    • New Milton Junior School
    • Our Lady and St Joseph Catholic Primary School
    • Priestlands Comprehensive School (Year 10 PSHE students)
    • Pennington Juniors School
    • Pennington Infants School

    To find out more about the national Dementia Friends programme or how to become a Champion so you can run your own information sessions then visit the following website:


  • Dementia Home

    Dementia Matters 

    Dementia signpost showing confusion

    Couple worried about dementia

    lymington - a dementia friendly community

    Volunteer members of the Lymington Dementia Action Group (LDAG) try to help people living with dementia to feel welcomed and secure in our community and to live as independently as possible for as long as possible. 

    Many thanks to Lymington resident, Peter Dean, who recently wrote this thoughtful poem about dementia, entitled 'It Will Still Be Me

    What support is available? 

    Given the support they need people with dementia can continue to live independently in the community for longer.  With appropriate activities available on a regular basis they can continue to socialise and enjoy doing the things they used to do, and take up new activities too.  Carers get some respite and a chance to meet and chat with others dealing with the same issues.

    Regular events and activities - click the links for more information

    • Dementia Support Group at The Coates Centre -  monthly coffee morning for people with dementia and their partners and carers, find out about the support available locally
    • Weekly "pop up cafe" on Friday afternoons at Court Lodge
    • Art classes run by Dementia New Forest:  Monday mornings 10-12, alternating between Milford on Sea community centre and Linden House in Lymington as venues. Please call ahead to book a place beforehand as numbers are limited.
    • Together in Harmony - twice monthly music sessions with Frances Attwood for people living with dementia in the community - held at Boldre Memorial Hall

    Helpful articles and information


    Want to know more about dementia?

    Dementia is not a normal part of ageing and is not confined to the elderly. The term dementia describes a set of symptoms that occur when the brain is damaged by certain diseases, such as Alzhimers or a series or small strokes. Find out more about dementia.

    Dementia friendly events

    Dementia friendly organisations

    Lymington Dementia Action Group

    The Lymington Dementia Action Group (LDAG) is a group of volunteers based in and near Lymington. It was formed initially as part of a national initiative to encourage communities to recognise that the increasing number of people living with dementia and their carers need our understanding and support. Learn more about LDAG.

    Dementia friendly Lymington - businesses and events

    Events organised in Lymington and surrounding areas by LDAG and other local organisations, including music events, sports events, tea dances and Dementia Friends meetings. Find out what's on in our Events Calendar.

    A number of shops, places and organisations in Lymington are now 'dementia friendly' - for details, see Dementia friendly Lymington

    Find dementia help and support

    If you’re worried about possible dementia symptoms, or if a loved one has been diagnosed with dementia and you need support or information about local facilities available, click here.

    Whatever your needs or concerns about dementia, Lymington Dementia Action Group will try to point you in the right direction to get more information, advice or support. The team would also be interested in hearing your comments, suggestions or experiences related to dementia services and facilities in the area. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    news of recent events 

    Quiz boosts Dementia Action

    Team members from five New Forest care homes went into battle for a ‘fiercely competitive but fun’ quiz in aid of the Lymington Dementia Action Group. Read more.

    Tea Dance Delight

    On Saturday 6th May 2017, people in our local community living with dementia, together with their families and carers, attended Lymington Dementia Action Groups 4th Tea Dance. Held at the Lymington Centre from 2-4pm, guests enjoyed tea and cakes supplied by Colten Care, on vintage bone china which had been supplied very generously by Jane Rowlatt. The fabulous entertainment, which got everybody singing and dancing, was provided by Retro Rita, who sang a selection of songs from the 40's and 50's. The event was attended by over 62 people and thanks also goes to members of the Lymington Lions Club for their continued help and support on the day.

    LDAG trip to Exbury Gardens

    Lymington Dementia Action Group organised an outing to Exbury Gardens in June, with picnic and train rides on the steam railway. It was a great success and more trips like this are planned. 

  • Inspiration for people with dementia

    Glorious Opportunity

    Inspiration from Dr Jennifer Bute for people with dementia and their families


    Dr jennifer buteDr Jennifer Bute  used to be a GP but retired early with early onset Alzheimer's Disease. Since then it has become her passion to try and help people understand about it, because she believe it is her great opportunity, a God-given unexpected gift in order to understand this as she describes it "hurt" section of society.  

    She recently visited Lymington and as a committed Christian spoke inspirationally to a number of people who gathered to meet her at Lymington Baptist Church.

    What Dr Bute has to say will be of help to  

    • people who suspect they have or have recently been diagnosed with dementia and are coming to terms with what this means
    • their husbands, wives, partners, families - all those close to them who discover that they have inadvertently become  carers and are feeling frightened and ill equipped for this role  
    • anybody else who is prepared to spend a few minutes learning a little more about dementia - who will discover that by adapting their behaviour in very small ways they can make the lives of people with dementia and their carers in the community much more bearable 
    Here's the nub of it, in Dr Bute's own words:

    "People with dementia can become confused and upset.  They may see, smell or hear things no-one else does, or be "Time Travelling", thinking they are living in an earlier decade, so be become confused at what they see around them.  Their behaviour can be unusual or awkward.  They may find it hard to express themselves or understand others.

    Feelings remain when Facts are Forgotten

    It is important to remember that a person with dementia is exactly the same person inside as they used to be, but as they find communication difficult, others need to make adjustments in how they communicate with them.

    Their condition makes it difficult or impossible to store new factual information, although they experience and remember feelings in the normal way. Feelings always remain, as does spiritual awareness.

    Visiting, having a conversation with a person with dementia can encourage feelings of self-worth in them and bring comfort and happiness."


    Start by watching the video on Dr Bute's website  

    She has made a number of videos, and enjoys  speaking at conferences, and at meetings for doctors, carers or relatives. 

    She has also written a number of  very useful leaflets to help people for example:

    • Suggestions when visiting someone with dementia
    • Suggestions for preventing and dealing with some aspects of confusion and stress
    • Understanding dementia
    You will find a list of these leaflets and can download them as pdfs for your own use: 

    You can also find more information on her Facebook page:

    Multicolour image

  • Lymington Dementia Action Group

    Lymington Dementia Action Group

    Increasing awareness of dementia in the local community


    Lymington Dementia Action Group logo

    The Lymington Dementia Action Group (LDAG) is a group of volunteers based in and near Lymington who are helping the area to become 'dementia friendly'.

    We formed as part of a national initiative that encouraged communities to recognise that the increasing number of people living with dementia and their carers need our understanding and support. That by being more “aware”, we could all make small changes in our own behaviour which will help people with dementia to feel less confused and frightened, and carers to feel less alone caring.

    We spread the awareness of dementia in the community, developing “signposting” to help those affected to find the support they needed.

    And now we are focusing on the active organisation of events and activities which are of benefit to people with dementia and can at the same time provide some respite - and even fun - for their carers. Activities like art, listening to music and making music, sporting reminiscence and tea dances.


    Background to LDAG

    Lymington Dementia Action Group logo

    Against a background of increasing numbers of people with dementia and a growing army of relatives who had turned into carers, our original remit was to help Lymington and the surrounding area become 'dementia friendly'. We formed in response to the Prime Minister's challenge on dementia and have been awarded a grant by Hampshire County Council and are working alongside The Lymington & Pennington Town Council and New Forest District Council . We are part of the Hampshire Dementia Action Alliance and are inviting all relevant local organisations, charities and individuals to join us and help us achieve our objectives.  If you feel you would like to get involved or could help then please do This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    On 20 September 2014 Lymington was formally recognised as a "Dementia Friendly Town".  Now the work continues, to build on what has been achieved so far and to build a truly dementia friendly community to support the increasing number of people ranging from the elderly to the not so old at all, each trying to come to terms with a diagnosis of dementia and what it means for themselves and their loved ones, and where to get the most appropriate support.

    The thinking is that if we all understand better what dementia is, we can make small changes in our attitudes and behaviour, which in turn will make dementia less firghtening and more "normal" for those affected. Although there is as yet no cure for dementia, with the right support it is possible to live well with dementia. People with dementia can love better, for longer - and we all play our part in helping to make that happen.

    We can all help in different ways depending on our roles in the community - from medical people, to those running shops and cafes, to school children in town and visiting grandparents - all of us are likely to meet people with dementia in our daily lives.

    LDAG comprises a number of people from the caring professionals, but also others from backgrounds such as legal, retail and communication. We also work alongside the Alzheimer's Society and help to publicise that charity's many and varied efforts and activites in the fight to beat dementia for the future, and make it more torable for those already affected by it.


    Join the LDAG team!

    If you would like to join us (we meet on the second Tuesday of each month) or find out more please email our Chairman on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


    Worried about dementia, don't ignore it, click here for more information.


  • Lymington scores with a new sports group for people with dementia

    Lymington scores with a new sports group for people with dementia.

    Local sports enthusiasts living with dementia can meet, remember and discuss favourite sporting memories.


    Remembering Sport: Lymington Dementia Action Group's new groupOn 20th July, the Lymington Dementia Action Group is launching a new dementia support group called 'Remembering Sports' at the Coates Centre. The Lymington Dementia Action Group is a community group launched in May 2014 run by volunteers to help raise dementia awareness and understanding in Lymington and surrounding areas. It is part of the Hampshire Dementia Action Alliance and to-date has created over 800 Dementia Friends.

    The Alzheimer’s Society previously ran sports reminiscence groups out of the Lymington Library with the support of New Forest District and Hampshire County councils. This service was closed at the end of 2015, much to the disappointment of those who regularly attended.

    Tim Wookey, Chair of The Lymington Dementia Action Group explained: “our group met with representatives from the District Council and the Alzheimer’s Society to ensure we didn’t lose much-loved local services for people living with dementia. We’re delighted to have secured financial support from Lymington and Pennington Town Council, the voluntary support of local sports enthusiasts and the leadership of Richard Tuck who successfully ran the original groups. The first three dates have been confirmed for 20th July, 17th August and 21st September and the 1.5 hour sessions will be kindly hosted at the beautiful Coates Centre on Lower Pennington Lane. We’re very grateful to all parties for their support and hope to continue this service long term.”

    Richard Tuck commented, “I’m delighted that once again I can meet regularly with a group of people who love to discuss sports despite living with dementia. These sessions create very special moments that help people find comfort and reassurance even if they are unable to talk – we find many interactive ways for everyone to participate using all their senses. We also find that carers really enjoy the sessions as they are welcome to get involved or simply drop a loved-one off, subject of course to their needs.”

    If you are interested in attending then please call Richard Tuck on 01590 719341. If anyone has any notable or interesting sports memorabilia or they are passionate about sports and would like to help volunteer at future sessions then please get in touch. 

    The photo was taken at the Coates Centre and includes from left to right: Tim Wookey LDAG Chair, Max Moyles, LDAG volunteer, Nadia Dennis, LDAG volunteer, Richard Tuck, Remembering Sports lead, Laura Rolph LDAG Vice Chair, Vicky Lander, Coates Centre Community Engagement Admin Assistant.

  • Quiz boosts Lymington dementia action

    Quiz boosts Lymington dementia action

    Caring brains thanked for raising funds for Lymington Dementia Action Group

    Colten Care Quiz in aid of Lymington Dementia Action GroupTeam members from five New Forest care homes went into battle for a ‘fiercely competitive but fun’ quiz in aid of the Lymington Dementia Action Group.

    Around 50 players, mainly staff from the family-owned Colten Care group, took part in the event at the Lymington Town Sailing Club, raising more than £200. Homes represented were Belmore Lodge, Court Lodge and Linden House in Lymington, Woodpeckers in Brockenhurst and Kingfishers in New Milton.

    Joining in were colleagues from the homes’ support team at Colten House in Ringwood plus friends from St Mark’s Church in Pennington.

    A mix of trivia, general knowledge and Colten-specific questions eventually saw the team from Linden House declared the winner.

    Janie Pearman, Home Manager at both Belmore Lodge and Woodpeckers, said: “The evening was a great opportunity for colleagues from our local family of homes to get together. The competition was fierce but fun.

    “While we hoped to raise money for a charity, we didn’t make the choice. It was our residents who wanted us to donate it to the Lymington Dementia Action Group, and that’s just what we’ve done.”

    Action Group Chairman Ian Erridge said: “A huge thanks to all who took part in the quiz and the residents who were so keen for the funds to come to us.

    “Funding is vital to help us reach out to the wider community, build awareness, provide local support and maintain Lymington as a dementia friendly community.”

    Find out more about Lymington Dementia Action Group.

    Find out about Dementia Matters locally.


  • Setting out for a world without dementia

    Setting out into the New Forest for a world without dementia.

    Forest care home residents set out on a 'memory walk' in aid of the Alzheimer's Society.


    Colten Care's Woodpecker home memory walkA sponsored ‘memory walk’ involving residents at Colten Care's Woodpeckers nursing and residential home in Brockenhurst has raised more than £400 for the Alzheimer’s Society. Families, friends and team members were among a 17-strong group to complete a 1hr 20min circuit to and from the town’s High Street.

    Sara Gould and Jane Bunker, Activities Organisers at the home, paid particular tribute to residents Jacky Flint, Lynn Sparks, Ruth Jones and Gwen Simon for their efforts.

    “They were determined to do as much of the route as they could even if it was a large amount of walking for them," shared Jane. "In the end, Jacky and Lynn walked all the way. We did stop for rests and of course had wheelchairs at hand as required."

    “It was a lovely outing. The families were really supportive and happy to walk, push wheelchairs and stop traffic as we slowly crossed roads. They were saying how lovely it was to walk as a group and how proud they were of their loved ones taking part. We all want to do it again next year.”

    The Alzheimer’s Society says 225,000 people are diagnosed with dementia in the UK every year, the equivalent of one every three minutes. The Society’s Memory Walk initiative involves organised walks across the country in aid of a ‘world without dementia’. As well as research costs, money raised goes towards direct medical and therapeutic help for those living with the condition.


  • Specialist Dementia Colten Care - Jane's Story

    Colten Care provides the ultimate in specialist care for our loved ones with dementia

    If you’re caring for a loved one with dementia there will come a stage when you may have to face a very difficult step, when you realise or acknowledge that you can no longer cope.

    Colten Care dementia

    Update and Introduction - January 2016

    This article has been written for families who might find it hard to discuss the dreaded subject of care homes. It might also help some people who think everything about care homes must be negative, to read another perspective!

    This is a true story and well worth a read. It is a very positive story about the incredible level of care provided by Colten Care staff in all Colten Care homes.

    Alzheimers and the care home decision

    My own story is probably fairly typical: mother diagnosed with Alzheimers in her very late 70’s, elderly father gradually finding it harder to cope but somehow managing to keep the struggle to himself, both of them initially "in denial", 3 of us daughters of whom only one local all with children of our own to care for, not really understanding what’s happening and all only able to help to a limited extent.

    And then suddenly our father was too frail, the choices were stark and had to be made.

    First they tried a live in carer but it is hard to adapt to a stranger in your home and it’s hard on one carer, on whom such a burden of responsibility falls. So both our parents moved to a local dementia care home which had a respite room available.

    The basics of care: cleanliness, friendliness and kindness

    To be fair the staff were kind, all the basics you’d expect were in place: cleanliness, friendliness and kindness. And there were activities which both our parents in their different ways could enjoy.

    Already our mother seemed visibly to relax. It had been so hard at home – although Dad seemed to want to maintain independence and tried to keep upappearances, his stress had transferred to her. And people with Alzheimers especially at that relatively early stage, become very sensitive to mood.

    Also new friends were made. That’s what people don’t realise – the move from own home to care home brings all sorts of unforeseen benefits!

    But later on after our father died, we realised the local home we’d initially chosen simply wasn’t good enough for our mum all alone most of the time apart from a visit a couple of times a week from one or other of us daughters.

    Residents seemed to be left alone for a long time especially when they were in their own rooms. There were occasional lapses in personal care too – one of which my sister discovered on arriving to visit, and was horrified. All the staff were busy. The answer was probably quite simple – in that home, at that time, the ratio of staff to residents just wasn’t high enough.

    Colten Care specialist dementia care home

    So still in the time before Linden House was built in Lymington we did our research, discovered Colten Care and moved Mum to St Catherines View specialist dementia care home in Winchester - on which Linden House was in many ways subsequently modelled. 

    More than 3 years on she is cocooned from danger and effectively wrapped in cotton wool since a fall last year when she broke her leg, surrounded by gentle voices and cared for by superhumanly kind people, she’s been in what they call the final stage of Alzheimers for some time now, and exists in a kind of in between world of her own.

    For a long while she was still mobile, still able to converse with others, and I witnessed and shared many happy occasions and interactions, with the most amazingly caring kind staff you can imagine. 

    Norma is happy and contented at St Catherines View specialist dementia care home


    A veritable army of kind people at Colten Care, all devoted to the care of our vulnerable loved ones

    And this is when you truly realise the benefit of a really good specialist dementia care home. First there is a well structured care team in each of the “houses” within the care home (maximum 11 residents share living and dining room and care team). Whatever their age and nationality they all speak clearly in English and have wonderful caring personalities as well as a very high level of training in care. The main house team is supported by an army of other staff from nursing to activities to catering to domestic. And they are all, to a person, kind and caring people.

    And everything is so well organised with rotas and breaks, that everybody has enough care to go around, all the time they’re on duty!

    Colten Care specialist dementia care team at Pilgrims House St Catherines View May 2015


    And when occasionally a very special one leaves, to our relief and actually, sometimes our amazement, his or her role is immediately replaced by an equally caring loving team member.

    I could say far more about all the amazing things these wonderful people do day and night to ensure that the residents in their charge are cared for and given companionship and love. Please feel free to ask me for specific information if it's relevant to you.

    Our mum now spends most of her days as well as her nights in bed because she is very sleepy. In fact she’s always loved being in her bed. And what a comfy safe cot bed this is which can be raised in all sorts of different ways and with a brilliant mattress– I know because I frequently climb in and have a little doze next to her, I’m usually exhausted when I visit and it’s lovely for us both, to have that physical contact.

    Norma in her cosy comfy bed at St Catherines

    (She’s never had any discomfort, bedsores don’t exist in a Colten Care home – the turning routines and the quality of the mattresses makes sure of that.)

    Contented and happy – cosseted and cared for in every way imaginable

    When I visit I’m normally there through a mealtime and will personally spoon feed the liquid food and thickened drink (for reasons of safety to avoid choking). These would otherwise be patiently administered on a very regular basis by one of the carers, to the accompaniment of gentle chatter. The process takes quite a long time as you can imagine. But Mum could still enjoy this year's birthday cake - mixed with cream!

    Norma enjoys her birthday cake at St Catherines View, September 2015

     And thanks to the superhuman level of care provided by the wonderful Colten Care team with their gentle voices and the loving kindness they display every minute of every day towards our precious relatives – our mum is happy. Her mysterious conversations with the wall next to her bed are comfortable chats with her own parents, old friends and lovers from long ago, who knows, sometimes the names mentioned ring no bells with us. In fact many of the words are nonsense now but occasionally a whole sentence is crystal clear and sometimes, it’s directed towards you - and it’s a joy even if short lived, to experience real communication once again.

    If you can see your loved one is content, it goes a long way to assuage the guilt that you can’t do it yourself. But this is much more than that.

    An extension of life itself, a blessing

    It’s like an extension of life – literally thanks to the level of care. If our mum had remained in the first care home my sisters and I are convinced she would have left us a long time ago. And this is a strange subject, which you have to consider carefully. A good care home is expensive, it will potentially eat up ALL the inheritance. And you might think you would not want to be there yourself, you want a pill for when that time comes – I know I say I do. But when it comes to it, when it’s your mum still looking elegant and speaking with her beautiful voice even if the words make no sense to us (they do to her), and she’s so clearly content in her little cocooned world, you can start to believe that it was meant to be, that she should have this special period of life when everybody is geared to HER comfort and joy rather than her having to attend to everybody else’s.

    So there we are.

    Peace of mind with Colten Care specialist dementia care

    If you want the peace of mind knowing your loved one is the best cared for that he or she could possibly be, I simply cannot recommend Colten Care highly enough. Quality care comes at a price for sure, and we’re fortunate that our father had savings and pension sufficient to meet the cost so far. But I’m confident that when this phase is past and we have only our memories of our mum, we will have no regrets about the choices we eventually made for her.

    Jane Porter, December 2015

  • Why everybody in Lymington should be a Dementia Friend

    Why everybody in Lymington should be a Dementia Friend

    Lymington Dementia Action Group Lymington a dementia friendly town  September 2014


    Lymington has officially been a “Dementia Friendly Town” for some time now. This is appropriate in a town where a significant proportion of the population is elderly, since dementia is a condition which on the whole affects older people.

    One of the measures of dementia friendliness is the number of “Dementia Friends” in the community. And logically, up until now, people in Lymington who’ve become Dementia Friends are mainly people who already have connections with dementia.

    Dementia Friends can improve the lives of people with dementia

    But if everybody in Lymington was prepared to give up just an hour of their time to become a Dementia Friend, things would really start to change. 

    Just one small step taken by many would help to improve the quality of life for those living with dementia in the community.

    dementia friends puzzleAt any one time there are many people in the midst of our community struggling to come to terms with a diagnosis of dementia. Whether they are themselves losing their memories and finding everyday tasks suddenly challenging, or whether they are trying to look after a dearly loved one who has dementia, it is a confusing, frightening time for all concerned.

    There are of course medical and support services and resources to help them.

    But the key thing which concerns us all is this: the longer people with dementia can remain in the community, living relatively “well” in their homes with their loved ones, the better they are likely to feel about themselves and their changed circumstances.

    And the rest of us can help to make that possible.

    Because becoming a Dementia Friend is very simple and takes less than an hour.


    What is a Dementia Friend?

    First let’s correct an understandable misunderstanding. Being a Dementia Friend does not mean that you have to actually befriend somebody with dementia. In fact in some ways “Dementia Friend” is a misleading term.

    Being a Dementia Friend simply means, first that you know how to spot the signs and thus are more likely to recognise that somebody has dementia.dementia friends tree

    Second, because you have a little more insight into what it actually feels like to have dementia, you’ll also understand better how to behave when you meet somebody who has it.

    In fact very small changes in your behaviour which would require no effort on your part, could make that person feel better about both him or herself and the immediate world about him or her.

    So, even if you don’t personally know anybody with dementia, please become a Dementia Friend.


    We need less than an hour of your time

    Dementia awareness sessions are given by trained volunteer Dementia Champions.  The interactive sessions include refreshments, and take less than an hour. 

    You’ll experience some everyday situations through the eyes of somebody with dementia. This is enough to give you an insight into how very small changes in your behaviour can make a difference to how people with dementia can live better, for longer.

    Special Dementia Awareness Sessions are hold throughout the year. The next session is on  ,..... at Linden House Dementia Care Home in New Street, in the large and airy staff training room with excellent sandwiches provided.

    We’re hoping that lots of people will come along who until now perhaps thought that “dementia” had nothing to do with them.

    The 45 minutes session is highly interactive, and the time will fly. You will leave better informed and “aware”, that you can play your own small part in making our town truly “Dementia Friendly”.

    You’ll then be one of the growing team able to help people with dementia to lead happier lives within our community for longer, and to help the husbands or wives caring for them to feel better supported by our community.

    This is definitely a win win – simply for giving up a small amount of your time.

    Staff and fresh sandwiches will be on hand to welcome you from 5.30 pm.  The session will start at 6pm and we promise you can be on your way home before 7pm.

    Please bring a friend – or two – or more! Together we can spread the word and create a positive energy about living well with dementia. People can continue to live fulfilled lives and enjoy their favourite activities within the community, for a long while after a dementia diagnosis.

    Please contact Anita Irvine, Linden House Home Manager and let her know you plan to attend – apart from anything else this has a direct bearing on the number of sandwiches provided!

    Event details here


    Telephone: 01590 647500 and ask for Anita.
    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    More information about Lymington's dedicated dementia care home Linden House 

  • Worried about dementia?

    Worried about dementia?

    Information and advice from Lymington Dementia Action Group.


    Couple worried about dementiaWhat is dementia?

    Dementia is not a normal part of ageing, and is not confined to the elderly. The term dementia describes a set of symptoms that occur when the brain is damaged by certain diseases, such as Alzheimers or a series of small strokes.

    Symptoms of dementia

    Everyone’s experience is different, but things to look out for include problems with:

    • day-to-day memory
    • concentrating, planning or organisation
    • language e.g. struggling to find the right word
    • judging distances and seeing objects properly (not caused by poor eyesight)
    • orientation e.g. confusion about day or month or where you are
    • changes in mood or emotions

    These changes are often small to start with, but gradually they begin to affect daily life and family and friends may start to notice too.

    Visit your doctor if you are worried about the signs of dementia

    Visit your GP and explain your concerns

    First of all it’s important to rule out other conditions that may have similar symptoms and may be treatable, including depression, dehydration and urinary tract infections, etc. You may be asked to take a short memory test – a series of simple questions. If appropriate your doctor will then refer you to our local specialist dementia centre, the Becton Centre in Barton on Sea. Their specialists and memory nurses will carry out more testing and possibly a scan. Based on results combined with your medical history they will compile and make a diagnosis. You may then be given a prescription for medication, which can slow the progression of the disease. 


    Getting a dementia diagnosis is a positive step

    First of all, it allows you to take control of the situation rather than letting it control you. And it unlocks the door to legal, social and practical support, which will help you and your loved ones to live well, for longer. The good news is, there are people to help you with every aspect of coping with dementia. You don’t need to feel alone; there is support and help on hand.


    Dementia Advice

    Hampshire County Council funds the Dementia Advice Service for our area. When you receive your diagnosis you should be introduced to your local dementia advisor, who will ensure you have all the information you need. Dementia advisors provide one to one support, as confidential as you want it to be. They can arrange to visit you at home or if you prefer you can visit them at the regular local drop in session, where you can keep visiting again for as long as you need and as your needs change. They will also be available on the end of a telephone when you need more help.

    Contact your local dementia advisor on 023 9289 2034 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    More useful resources and information about dementia


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