East Hampshire Dementia Festival features leading dementia service

Friday, 10 May, 2019

A Petersfield event to help people living with dementia will feature a leading team able to offer help, advice and medical expertise.

East Hampshire District Council and Petersfield Dementia Friends are hosting the day on Friday 24 May to give people living with the condition, and their carers, access to the best help available in the district.

In addition to the Alzheimer’s Society and other local services, the event will also be supported by the Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust, the main provider of dementia diagnosis services, community care and inpatients wards across Hampshire.

Southern Health provides diagnostic clinics, ongoing community mental and physical health support and signposting for people with dementia as well as care coordination and hospital liaison. It has 11 community mental health teams, three wards that care for people with dementia and also runs a number of GP surgeries in South East Hampshire.

Lucy Coates, Area Matron for Southern Health, said: “I am delighted we are able to take part in this fantastic day which will give people living with dementia, and their carers, a range of guidance and advice.

“This is a great opportunity for people to come along and meet organisations like Southern Health and find out what our team can do to support you.”

The event, to be held in Petersfield Festival Hall, will highlight the broad range of support, advice and services available for people with dementia. It will be opened by East Hampshire MP Damian Hinds and feature stalls, charities and presentations, as well as the expert advice of medical professionals.

Dementia diagnosis rates are steadily increasing, adding to the 1,600 people in East Hampshire already living with the condition. One in six people over the age of 80 are living with dementia and an increasing number of younger people are being diagnosed.

Cllr Julie Butler, East Hampshire District Council Deputy Leader, said: “It is possible to live well with dementia and it doesn’t mean that your normal life has to stop. If you take steps early and plan ahead for your future you can continue to live comfortably and happily for longer. It also makes things easier for those around you.

“I am thrilled that Southern Health have agreed to take part and bring vast knowledge and expertise to the day.

“Our event is perfect for anyone that has recently been diagnosed with dementia or for people who are concerned about someone’s memory, and is unsure where to go now. If you look after a family member or friend who is experiencing memory loss issues or has been diagnosed with dementia, come along and find out what help there is for you out there.”

Another addition to the day will be the Memory Assessment & Research Centre (MARC) which conducts clinical trials into dementia, mild cognitive impairment and memory problems with the aim of understanding how to diagnose, treat, cure and prevent dementia.

Jeff Williams, Petersfield Dementia Friends Champion, said: "I have worked and volunteered with the Petersfield Dementia community for nearly eight years and the festival is a unique opportunity for the population of East Hampshire to find out at first hand the support and medical facilities that are available all under one roof.

"Whether your family has experienced dementia or you want to find out more about your diagnosis and the support network available, I can recommend the festival. I can particularly recommend the afternoon Memory Café for people living with dementia, their families and carers to enjoy a musical experience and an afternoon tea specifically aimed at people living with dementia."

Open from 10am-3.30pm the festival will also feature:

  • Stalls from up to 30 East Hampshire-focused groups, charities and support agencies that work with those with dementia
  • Free legal advice from Macdonald Oates Solicitors
  • The Princess Royal Trust for Carers in Hampshire how to arrange an emergency plan for carers
  • Hampshire Fire and Rescue will show how to keep safe and well and offer simple safety tips
  • Winton House will run a Memory Café – including a musical activity designed for people with dementia
  • Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust
  • A vintage tea room for refreshments

For more information on the festival contact Janie Millerchip, Senior Community Health and Wellbeing Officer at East Hampshire District Council, on 01730 234097 or Janie.millerchip@easthants.gov.uk or Jeff Williams, Dementia Friends Champion, on 07849 195702.