National Trust sites to become dementia-friendly

We’re thrilled at the news that the National Trust is joining forces with the Alzheimer’s Society in order to give its historic and countryside sites dementia-friendly makeovers.

National Trust sites to become dementia-friendly

Figures revealed that more than 150,000 of its supporters over the age of 65 may be living with the condition.

We’re big advocates of everyone getting outside in the fresh air. We always recommend our service users and any elderly folk pay a visit to their local National Trust site. They’re great for walking and getting some exercise. They’re also a great place for people to socialise. You can even stop for tea and cake, meaning you can make a day of it.

What changes will be made?

The Trust will improve signage and materials used on its paths and in its car parks to make access easier.

Its 74,000 employees and volunteers will also receive dementia training and will join the Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends initiative.

Some properties will also develop dementia services such as cafes, tours and social events. They will also take heritage into local care homes, hospitals, day centres and community groups.

People with dementia can view heritage sites as ‘safe’ and familiar spaces. Historic spaces, collections and stories are also great for stimulating discussion.

The National Trust says…

The National Trust’s Volunteering and Inclusion Director, Tiger de Souza said on its website: “Dementia is the greatest health concern of our time, so it is important that people living with the condition can continue to enjoy a positive and fulfilling life.

“A number of our sites are already offering great experiences for people living with dementia, and through this landmark partnership we aim to extend those benefits to many more people. However, we recognise there are challenges around both accessibility and the support available at these sites and this is why we are joining forces with Alzheimer’s Society.”