Malmesbury Community Area Dementia Action Alliance
Background to area
Malmesbury Community Area has agreed set up a Steering Group for the Dementia Action Alliance, whilst encouraging each individual parish to work towards becoming Dementia Friendly Community.
The work will include encouraging Parishes involved in the Malmesbury Area Board these include: Ashton Keynes, Brinkworth, Brokenborough, Charlton, Crudwell, Dauntsey, Easton Grey, Great Somerford, Hankerton, Lea and Cleverton, Leigh, Little Somerford, Luckington and Alderton, Malmesbury, Minety, Norton and Foxley, Oaksey, Sherston, Sopworth and St Paul Malmesbury Without
Malmesbury is a hilltop town, surrounded by the River Avon in North Wiltshire. Its origins can be traced back to the fifth century, but modern excavations have revealed the remains of an Iron Age Fort, which casts the settlement possibly as far back as 500 BC. Malmesbury is also home to England’s oldest hotel, the Old Bell, which has been offering bed and board since 1220. The town with its medieval streets, old courtroom, and almshouses is lovely to walk around and the marketplace contains an elaborately engraved 15th-century market cross which is one of the best preserved of its kind in the country.
More recently, Malmesbury is the location for the headquarters for Dyson and further expansion of the town continues, due in part to its good connections to the M4 and Cirencester. Seen as an affluent area in a beautiful setting, the wider Malmesbury area is strongly rural in nature, with many of the 19,400 residents living in small villages and communities. There is good road access to the north and south for those who drive but most villages don't have many amenities and are not particularly well served by public transport. For some, the bus service into Malmesbury may be only once a day, with none running into the evening, and poor weather can make some villages inaccessible. Access to larger towns where more major amenities and services are available can be convoluted. These factors all play a part in increasing the potential for isolation of more vulnerable residents.
History of work with Dementia to date
We already have a lot of activities for people in the area. In Malmesbury we have a Singing For The Brain group specifically for people with dementia and their family/friends/carers. We also have lots of social activities for all ages and interests. These include Malmesbury Seniors and the Town Hall lunch club. There are enough coffee groups for every day of the week to be served!. The town also offers a Tuesday activity group, a Monday PHAB group along with carers groups run at the GP Surgery and a carers support group. There is also the Malmesbury U3A and many other interest groups which offer a more specialised forum. The surrounding villages are also a hive of activity with each offering a range of groups from flower arranging to lunch club, boules to croquet. Of course every small community has its own get together, usually on a monthly basis.
Across the whole community area we ensure that the Safe Places scheme is operating in many shops and businesses.
• To continue to consult with people with dementia and their carers to find out how best to support them to be able to enjoy living in their town and village (Working towards a Dementia Friendly Communities).
• To continue to raise awareness by increasing the number of Dementia Friends in the community area and including children and young people.
• To continue to develop initiatives that help promote, care and make provision for people living with dementia and their carers in our communities.
Our Steering Group will meet every quarter, this small working group will help to drive the initiative and eventually help our small rural parishes set up Dementia Friendly Communities throughout our area. So we encourage the sharing our good practice and respond to new needs our Dementia Action Alliance Meetings will take place twice per year.
How to join (contact details)
The Malmesbury Community Area Dementia Action Alliance group welcomes support from anyone who is interested in supporting the work of the group. If you would like to join or would like more information please email either Ollie Phipps, Malmesbury Area Community Engagement Manager at Wiltshire Council – firstname.lastname@example.org or Ellen Blacker, Malmesbury Area Health and Wellbeing Champion – Ellen.Blacker@wiltshire.gov.uk