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Castleford Team Parish (Church of England)

The parish consists of four churches: All Saints, Church Street, Castleford All Saints, Lumley Street, Hightown St MIchael and All Angels, Smawthorne St Paul the Apostle, Glasshoughton There are three priests working full time in the parish together with a Polish priest. A Lay Pastoral Minister also assists in the parish. We also have a Children's and Family Worker working in the parish.

30 November 2016
Yorkshire and Humber
Faith Groups
Local Alliances:
Wakefield and Five Towns Dementia Action Alliance, Yorkshire & Humber Dementia Action Alliance

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

As a group of 4 churches within the Church of England, Castleford Team Parish holds a significant place in the community (serving all of Castleford except for the Airedale Estate; a community of approximately 30,000 people).

People who may only use the church for significant life celebrations/ commemorations such as baptisms, weddings and funerals.  They may also attend church at specific times of the year mainly at Christmas (Christingle, Carol Services and Midnight Mass) and at Easter.  Even though attendance at church may not be considered as regular with the community and also individuals the local church is referred to as “their church”.

Therefore, in addition to supporting members of the congregation who may either have dementia or be a carer, the churches in the parish have a role in providing venues used by the wider community and a significant role in the life of the substantial part of the community who see them as being “their church”.        

2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?

To avoid:

a) Perceptions of our involvement as being about self-interest using this as an opportunity to convert people – rather than an acknowledgement of our unique role in the wider community.

b) As being directed/owned only by the priests of Castleford Team Parish and members of the congregation not been involved in supporting this initiative within the greater community.     

We can overcome these challenges by showing our willingness to engage with the wider community through

- hosting an open Dementia Friends session - open to all who want to participate rather than one solely for our congregations;

- encouraging members of our congregation who attend the Dementia Friends session to become Dementia Friends Champions and learn to deliver the training to others across the whole community;

- involving the wider community in identifying ways to make church buildings more dementia-friendly through an open forum event held in one of our Church Hall;

- hosting a Dementia Carers’ Information Programme course for those living in the community to ensure they are equipped with the knowledge to support those they are caring for who are living with dementia.

We can also encourage the participation of the churches’ congregations and the wider community in Dementia awareness events (Dementia Friends and Carers’ Information Programme); members of the congregations to become Dementia Friends Champions; the involvement and contributions of the congregations and the wider community in identifying ways to make the churches and church buildings more dementia-friendly.         

2. Actions

  • Raising ouir own awareness

    Livability session on dementia; 34 members of the congregation from all 4 churches attended the session.  The session involved all attendees undertaking the training to become ‘Dementia Friends’.  There was also the opportunity to ask questions and also share personal experiences in a safe/supportive environment. 

  • Beginning to engage externally

    Joining Wakefield Dementia Action Alliance

  • Reaching Out - 1

    An open Dementia Friends training session to be hosted at the Church Hall, Castleford Parish Church – early 2015. This will be followed by an information gathering feedback session for people who want to be more involved in discussing how the church and local community can become dementia friendly. We may be able to set up a working party as a result of this.


    Castleford Parish Church – Parish Rooms consisting of ground and first floor halls: level access; no car park but pay and display parking is available across the road; though for people with Blue Badges they can park on the road directly outside the Halls.  A small kitchen is located on the ground floor in the one of the halls that can offer limited cooking facilities. Toilets are situated on the ground floor and also on the first floor.

    A visit has been arranged with the ‘Alzheimer’s Society’ (16/12/14) to look specifically at the suitability of the Parish Halls for hosting a dementia community event.  As part of the visit the ‘Society’ will be shown all our churches and their halls, as they may consider one of our other halls to be more suitable.  The visit will also give the ‘Society’ the opportunity to ask specific questions on what they have seen as well as building up an impression of our buildings and the local geography and the communities to which we serve. 

  • Building momentum

    Recruit Dementia Friends Champions, one for each church initially who can deliver Dementia Friends Sessions in the community and churches when requested. Ensuring that the people who want to be Champions are supported and that they also are aware of the commitment they will be undertaking.

  • Practical steps - 1

    Set up a sub-group to look at physical access? See 6) below.

  • Practical steps - 2

    A meeting involving the clergy and Alzheimer’s Society staff to discuss how to make the church buildings (Parish Church only – as a pilot?) physically dementia-friendly/recognise aspects which cannot be changed/are difficult to change (for example, identifying seating which provides a good position to see and hear from) – early 2015.  The visit on the 16/12/14 will also be part of this planning process.

  • Reaching out - 2

    4 week Carers’ Information Programme to be delivered in Summer 2015 if need is there.