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Skipton Building Society Chesham

We're the Chesham branch of one of the UK’s largest building societies. As a mutual organisation, we're owned by our members and aim to help them during every stage in life, from buying their first home to planning a retirement they can enjoy. The Skipton Building Society and Chesham Building society merged 6 years ago, the Chesham Building Society was actually the oldest building society in the world! We’re proud of our rich heritage and our purpose has not changed. Being here for our customers to plan for their life ahead is still – and always will be – at the heart of what we do.

25 September 2017
South East
heritage, Finance
Local Alliances:
Buckinghamshire 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?

It's important to us to support our communities, including people who have dementia and their families, friends and carers. We’re proud to be working towards becoming dementia-friendly, as we recognise how important it is to many customers and colleagues.


Our branch teams will aim to reflect and practice our commitment to being dementia-friendly quickly and flexibly. We know many of our customers very well and in some cases we've known them for years – we know their families, and even their dogs' names. It's possible we'll bear witness to the onset of dementia, and will be here to help where we can.


Assistance we can offer will include face-to-face empathetic support for the customer and their families or carers, and being able to provide relevant and appropriate information and guidance from a financial services standpoint.

 We can also:

- raise awareness of dementia

- undertake basic awareness training (becoming Dementia Friends)

- signpost in branch we have a culture and environment where customers can feel safe to discuss their needs with us

- support our Local Dementia Action Alliance in community initiatives where possible.


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

Branches across our diverse communities will meet various challenges, including:

- not having existing local official DAA links

- not being able to recognise dementia easily, as symptoms can be hidden

- the onset of dementia in customers with a 'Skipton routine' might be masked and difficult to spot

- colleagues keen to get involved with local events might be restricted by the business need to have colleagues in branch

- branches becoming dementia-friendly might be limited by resource

- colleague ability and confidence to speak to family about concerns or handle face-to-face situations with a customer who has dementia.

 We feel motivated to put our plans into action and overcome these challenges. However, our main challenge might be time.

Member website


2. Actions

  • Improve our own understanding of dementia

    We will invite Dementia Friends Champions to hold a Dementia Friends Information Session to our branch colleagues.

  • Create a culture and environment where customers with dementia feel comfortable discussing their needs

    We will wear our Dementia Friends pin badges on our uniform, use the Dementia Friends email signature banner, and use our Community Notice Board to inform customers we're working to become dementia-friendly.

     We'll take opportunities, where possible and appropriate, to champion what we are doing and have conversations with our customers about it.


  • Support our Local DAA/local dementia initiatives

    We'll use our volunteering days to support our Local DAA and local dementia initiatives e.g. Memory Cafes, Singing for the Brain, Side by Side etc. 

    We'll use our Community Fund to provide useful items that will support local groups in their initiatives e.g. mugs, coffee, tea for the Memory Cafes, art supplies for dementia art projects, and so on. 

    We'll throw a fund raising event to support Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer Scotland.


  • We will use our meeting room space to support our Local DAA

    We'll give local Dementia Friends Champions access to our meeting room to run public information sessions and/or host the Local DAA steering group meetings.