Virtual Dementia Tour Visits Town

August 9, 2016 by Joanna Harrison

Wednesday 10th August 2016

A virtual dementia tour visited Southend-on-Sea today, as the town marked working towards becoming a ‘dementia friendly community.’

The ‘tour’ was provided in collaboration with University of Essex and was situated outside the Odeon. The tour gave a first-hand experience of how it may feel to have dementia and the limitations and frustrations that can be manifested by someone affected by the condition.

The tour was taken up by dementia leaders and professionals across the system to give them a unique insight into living with dementia.

A group of dementia friends were also on hand to recognise that Southend-on-Sea is working towards becoming a Dementia Friendly Community. The Alzheimer’s Society had an information point by the tour too so the public could access help and information.

Nursing lecturer Wendy Rajah from the University of Essex Southend campus said: “Having lost my own father to Dementia in April of this year, I wish I had known more about the condition and what he was experiencing. Through better awareness, I would have had a better understanding of his symptoms and ways in which to help him.”

Cllr Lesley Salter, Executive Councillor for Adult Social Care said: “In Southend-on-Sea we have at least 3,000 people living with dementia so our partnership work in this area is absolutely vital.

“It is wonderful to see the level of support across the Borough being offered from groups, local businesses and charity– all pledging to do their best to help make life easier for people affected by dementia, and those who care for them. The tour today is another step in becoming an official ‘dementia friendly community.”

Dementia friends training is already offered to workplaces and organisations; with many businesses signing up to Southend's Dementia Action Alliance (SDAA) - helping to make it easier for people living with dementia when they're out and about in town (visiting the bank, or supermarket, for example).

All organisations involved have pledged to do their best to help make life easier for people affected by dementia, and those who care for them.

If you are a business interested in joining the SDAA please email


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