Calne Community Area
The Calne Community Area is set in 133km2 of rural Wiltshire, which includes the parishes of Bremhill, Calne, Calne Without, Cherhill, Compton Bassett, Heddington and Hilmarton and a population of approx 24,000 people (Calne Community Area at mid-year 2011 - estimated total population of 23,260 persons).
Rural villages surround the market town of Calne, which is an important centre for people who live in the community area to access a wide range of services including health, education, leisure, shops and employment.
The community has a vibrant energy which becomes particularly evident at the local events, festivals and fairs that take place throughout the year and across the community area. The town is also the base of a ‘Community Hub’, run by and for local people from across the area. This project aims to develop an inclusive and welcoming venue where all members of the community area can come together and become positively engaged, enjoy informal learning opportunities, overcome social isolation, develop opportunities for local solutions to local issues through community action, access services locally and reduce the need to travel.
In 2014 the Calne Community Area Board (a local arm of Wiltshire Council) invited the community to a ‘Health Fair’ at which they learnt first aid skills, were given the opportunity to have health checks, took part in a Dementia Friends session and discussed health and wellbeing facts and findings contained in the local Joint Strategic Assessment, this included learning that in the Calne Community Area the dementia prevalence estimate for over 65s is 261.
The Health Fair culminated with the identification of community priorities and the development of a number of community led action groups including an Area Board Dementia Friendly Calne Community Area working group.
The initial aims of the group were to encourage as many people in the community as possible to attend a Dementia Friends session. The group has been encouraged and supported by Wiltshire Council and Calne Town Council and has grown to include a wide range of local people, including carers and people living with dementia, and partner agencies and organisations. They meet regularly and continue to develop their aims, actions and links to the wider community.
The overarching aim of the Calne Community Area Dementia Action Alliance (CCA DAA) is to make sure that everyone from the Calne Community Area living with dementia is respected and enabled to continue to enjoy living their lives in their own community as well as possible for as long as possible.
To do this the group will work in partnership across the community to develop practical actions to support those living with dementia and those who care for them.
The CCA DAA has been working hard over the last year to reach out to a huge range of local organisations and groups who may come into contact with someone living with dementia; shops and businesses, supermarkets, leisure facilities, day centres, GP surgeries, police and Fire & Rescue, care homes, care providers, clubs and groups, schools and youth groups.
In order to facilitate a large and growing list of dementia friend sessions and other actions to raise community awareness and deliver actions, the group aims to develop a network of local community champions who will support each other.
The group will actively try to raise awareness and spread the word that life doesn’t have to end when dementia begins, and encourage the community to help those people living with dementia in our area to hold onto their lives and the things they love for longer.
Working groups meetings are held monthly and bring together representatives of:
- Wiltshire Council
- Calne Town Council
- The Wiltshire and Swindon Users Network
- Greensquare Housing
- Calne Community Health & Social Care Forum
- Calne Memory Club
- Alzheimer’s Society
- Wiltshire Community Safety Forum
- Local people, including carers and people living with dementia
Full steering group meetings are held every 3 months.
How to join
The Calne Community Area DAA welcomes support from across the community. If you are interested in coming along to a meeting, or being involved in any way please email either Jane Vaughan firstname.lastname@example.org or Trudy King email@example.com