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Geffrye Museum

Located in former almshouses in Hoxton, the Geffrye Museum of the Home reveals how urban middle class homes have been used and furnished over the past 400 years. The collections reflect changes in society and behaviour as well as style, fashion and taste. A series of period rooms lead visitors on a walk through time from 17th century oak furniture and panelling, Georgian elegance and eclectic Victorian style, to 20th century modernity and contemporary living. These rooms are complemented by a sequence of period gardens and a walled herb garden which illustrate the role of the garden in home life and how domestic gardens have changed over time. Learning and engagement has always been, and continues to be, a priority at the Geffrye, and is an essential and central part of the museum's purpose.

1 July 2016
Local Alliances:
Hackney 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?

Over the past decade the Geffrye has been committed to working with older adults, including those with dementia, to encourage lifelong learning and play a role in wellbeing. The museum’s current Feeling at Home project is specifically supporting local older adults aged over 75, and those living with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Aligned with declaration outcome 1 and 5, the project has been designed around those living with dementia, their family and carers; it is flexible and responsive to feedback gained through sessions and through partnerships with local organisations such as the Alzheimer’s Society. Aligned with declaration outcome 3, 5, 6, the project supports older adults with dementia to engage with the Geffrye, its gardens and collections, through accessible, multisensory programming, which inspires new experiences as well as reminiscences and supports individuals to lead more active and social lives. Aligned with declaration outcome 7, learning and experiences gained throughout the project are feeding into wider sector research around museums, health and wellbeing particularly around dementia. The museum is using the project as an opportunity to share practice across the organisation about being more dementia friendly. The museum works closely in partnership and is embedded within its local community.

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

longevity/funding for Feeling at Home projectstaff availability/capacity to do training and involve themselves


2. Actions

  • Continue to develop understanding of what is wanted and needed by individuals living with dementia, their families and carers

    The museum will continue to work in partnership with and listen and respond to the local community, for example through outreach sessions at local Alzheimer’s Society dementia cafes and through the Hackney DAA. Training for older people’s group leaders will be an opportunity to hear from those working with older people with dementia about their ideas, experiences and expectations. Ongoing evaluation of the Feeling at Home project, including experiences of those living with dementia.


    2016 - Second Quarter Update

    The museum has continued to work in partnership with organisations working with older adults living with dementia and has started a new relationship with another Alzheimer's Society coffee club. The museum is currently doing a creative outreach project with a housing scheme involving several older adults living with dementia, and is evaluating the impact of multisensory object handling and art on these older participants' wellbeing. The museum was a part of the HDAA launch and much feedback was gained about the museum's potential to support older adults living with dementia.

  • Responding to needs and interests to ensure successful development of Feeling at Home project

    Within the Feeling at Home project there is room to shape and tailor each element of the project; sessions can be adapted to ensure they are accessible and inclusive and suit varying needs and interests, abilities and disabilities. Where relevant, information and ideas are will be shared across the museum. 


    2015 - Fourth Quarter Update

    New member

  • Dementia awareness training for all staff

    Dementia Friends information session for all staff to be delivered with support of Hackney Dementia Action Alliance. Front of house staff will be able to wear badges so visitors know the museum is dementia friendly.

    Initial Scoping

    2016 - Second Quarter Update

    Front of house, cafe and shop team members have taken part in Dementia Friends sessions. Further training for these teams, as well as for the wider museum, is being considered.

  • Support those working with or caring for individuals living with dementia to feel confident and comfortable visiting the museum

    Two training sessions will be held for older people’s group leaders and community-based volunteers, one with a particular focus on dementia. A dementia-friendly resource could be created out of this. Dementia awareness training for all staff could help those working with or caring for individuals living with dementia to feel confident visiting.

  • Dementia friendly considerations for new development project Unlocking the Geffrye

    Considerations to be made in planning for the museum’s upcoming redevelopment project to help the museum environment be dementia-friendly.


    2016 - Second Quarter Update

    The Older People's Advisory Panel were consulted on plans for the building redevelopment project prior to their submission to the council. The panel have also been consulted and invited to share ideas for audience involvement during the project.