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Working to become Dementia Friendly

Summary Record of Forum Meeting of 23 November 2023

Our most recent Forum meeting was held on 23rd November - read the Summary record here

Present: Dudley Shipton, Susan Foster, Ann Mayne, Susan Crowhurst, Kim Groves, Cleo Smith, Toni Habbershaw, John Sinclaire-Thomas, Shirley Moberly, Allison Brown, Jean Gilham, Neil Jones, Sheila Willis, Chris Porter, Ruth Hickey, Cherryll Hixon, Jane and Stephen Clark, Penny Shepherd, Sandrany Williams, Gillie Savage.

1. Welcome
Dudley welcomed everyone to the meeting which began at 10.00am. He extended a special welcome to:

Cherryll Hixon, the Alzheimers Society
Cherryll spoke of the ‘Time for Dementia’ initiative which permits medical students from a variety of universities to work with families with dementia, to broaden their experience. This involves face-to-face meetings and virtual meetings and has received excellent feedback from both students and families. Newcomers to the project are very much welcomed. Sandrany gave a personal recommendation and spoke of her own experience with the project and said how useful and successful it has been for her mother and herself. If anyone is interested in taking part, please contact Susan in the first instance for onward referral.
Dudley mentioned Clopen, another virtual reality experience via the University of Kent which may be of interest.
Cleo spoke of the Digital Innovation Centre at Hawkinge House which provides a different but very effective experience from the Dementia Bus.
Cherryll spoke of the online phone support provided by the Alzheimers Society for those with dementia and their carers, which is open Monday-Wednesday 9am until 8pm, Thursday and Friday 9am until 5pm and weekends 10am until 4pm.

Penny Shepherd, Ageing Without Children (AWOC), East Kent
AWOC now meets quarterly at 101 High Street with the next meeting scheduled for 13 February 2024, 10-12 noon. AWOC is a volunteer-led organization which provides informal mutual support, information and activities and collective influencing for those who have no support from the younger generation, for whatever reason. A monthly newsletter is available by contacting Penny directly at
Penny spoke of a research project led by the University of Sheffield which highlights how survey results are not shared with those with no carer, despite the surveys relating to those with no advocate.
Penny also serves as a governor for the Kent Community Health Foundation Trust for Folkestone and Hythe.

Allison Brown, CEO Tynwald Residential Care Home
Allison described how Tynwald is actively working to reduce waiting times in A and E departments at local hospitals by providing assessment and discharge beds. The home has capacity for 26 residents. Following the new Care Quality Commission framework, staff have been restructured to provide respite care and a bespoke day care service for five people, from 8.00am until 5.00pm.
There is now a full-time maintenance service which can support small jobs in the home.

2. Apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received and accepted from Wendy Richley, Stephen Callis, Paul Murray, Malcolm and Annelies Brice, Annie Anderson, Peter Jarvis, Brenda Courtney, Shirley Bates.

3. To review and agree the summary record of the previous meeting, 26 October 2023
Copies of the summary record were available to all and had been sent via email prior to the meeting.
The summary record was unanimously accepted to be a true and accurate record of the meeting of 26 October 2023.
Ann reported that the landlord of The Hope has offered the use of his premises for people to meet who no longer can be accompanied by their loved one with dementia. A date will be circulated for the first meeting in the New Year.
Cleo confirmed that Age UK are also setting up a similar group for those who wish to do something more active, rather than just meet to talk. It was requested that this should not happen on Tuesdays.

4. Report on recent Forum activities – Dudley Shipton
• Musical Afternoon – Wednesday 4 November with A Touch of Swing went remarkably well, despite difficulties in accessing the venue to begin with.
• Trip to Longacres, 15 November was enjoyed by 29 people. It was suggested that a similar trip in the future, perhaps to Dobbies and The Range, should take place after the first Wednesday of the month but before a Community Coffee Morning.
• HullabaDoobies – sessions are going very well indeed with attendees even getting up to dance, with thanks to Susan. Further dates are provided on the calendar as attached.
• Nina's Songsters - Nina has kindly offered the Forum three additional sessions. She will be attending the Christmas celebration and future dates are on the calendar as attached.
• Walking Tennis Social Group - those who have enjoyed walking tennis throughout the summer will continue to meet during the winter for indoor activities and sociability, to enable a natural transition in the springtime back to walking tennis, with everyone remaining familiar with the coaches and the venue.
• Community Coffee Mornings: Coffee Mornings are regularly attended by 45+ people and are supported by the Royal British Legion Hythe and Saltwood Branch, Brockhill Performing Arts College, and a benefits officer from Folkestone and Hythe District Council attends on the first Friday of each month. An additional Community Coffee Morning is held on the third Friday of each month.
• 101 Open Door Project: Susan continues to attend at 101 High Street on Monday afternoons, accompanied by Ian Norman to offer the Hypertension Heroes project which is now being delivered in the name of the Forum. Everyone is welcome to drop in for a chat and to collect community information, including information about the Forum activities and the venue is ideal for private appointments made in advance with Susan. The venue is becoming more popular with some people just popping along for company. Susan and Ian also deliver the Hypertension Heroes Project on Tuesday mornings 9.30-12 noon at the Hythe Pantry in the Catholic Church, Tuesday afternoons at 101 High Street, alternate Wednesday mornings at the Salvation Army, and will soon be accompanying the mobile pantry in Hawkinge (alternate Wednesday mornings) and Folkestone Academy (Friday afternoons).
• Let's Talk Dementia at Hythe Library: Tuesday morning sessions continue to be very popular with a maximum of 15 attendees each time. Places can be reserved by contacting Susan on 07734 383691 or by email to Thanks were expressed to all the library volunteers and Chris Porter who provide such a professional service.
• Dudley reported that the Forum committee had met earlier in the month to plan for the future.

5. Friends of Hythe Dementia –Ann Mayne
Ann reported that the Trustees had met on 21 November to plan for the future. A new Trustee has been appointed who is also a carer for someone with dementia. A new project has been proposed which should make the lives of carers a little easier. Equipment is being provided, notably sensor mats and airer/dryers.
Gary at Solo Hair Design has agreed to pay for a table at the Hythe Late Night Shopping on 15 December where a tombola will be available to raise funds. Donations of prizes would be welcomed.
Cleo offered to supply a template letter requesting prizes from business owners in the High Street.

Dudley added that on 20th November he had attended the AGM of the Hythe Business and Tourism Association and would be in further contact with them to establish a safe place for those with dementia. This may be at Waitrose, and Cleo suggested that the Community Hub would also provide support.

6. Future events already organised - a calendar of dates was available at the meeting and is attached to the minutes.
• Christmas Concert with the Band of the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment and the Military Wives Choir Shorncliffe - Saturday 25 November, 6.30 for 7.00pm at St Leonards Church. Tickets available from Susan.
• Christmas Celebration - Wednesday 6 December, 2.30-4pm Hythe Sports and Social Club. There will be Musical Bingo and a visit from Nina and her Musical Walkabout.
• Carols in the Church - Wednesday 13 December, 2.30pm St Leonards Church, with refreshments to follow.
• Trip to the Pantomime Sleeping Beauty, Saturday 16 December 2.00pm at the Tower Theatre. If you would like a ticket (£5 per person), please contact Susan. Preference will be given to those living with dementia and their carers. NB: no transport will be provided.
• Musical Afternoon – Wednesday 3 January 2024, with Ray Williams, 2.30-4pm at the Hythe Sports and Social Club.

7. Events to be planned.
● Outside visits/trips will be arranged in 2024, starting from mid-February, following the proposals for trips to Kearsney Abbey, Dover Transport Museum, Walmer Castle, a Maidstone river trip, Wet Wheels in Dover and the Battle of Britain Memorial at Capel. Dudley remains open to suggestions for destinations.
Cleo suggested that a visit to Bedgebury arboretum would be a good idea.

8. Update from the Dementia Action Alliance (DAA)
There was no further update, the next meeting being scheduled for 12 December. Shirley reported that she submits this summary record in advance of each meeting.

9. Information time
Cleo gave details of dates arranged at Age UK and said she would provide an electronic version of the Age UK newsletter for onward distribution, as some of the dates in the hard copies available were incorrect.
Cleo reported that the funding for the Dementia Co-Ordinator has not been confirmed, with current funding due to end in March 2024. The well-being contract is due for a similar renewal. Age UK have recognized that the role of the dementia activities co-ordinator is important and hope to fund this themselves if no further central funding is received.
An attendee asked about Age UK funding and Cleo replied that it is important for a year’s running costs to be held in a restricted fund to ensure business continuity.
The Age UK Annual General Meeting is scheduled for 29 November at 4.00pm and reports from external organisations are welcome. Dudley apologized in advance for his absence and added that he would have liked to have attended to express his thanks for Age UK’s continued support for those with dementia.

10. Any Other Business
• Sheila spoke of her concerns regarding the sharing of personal information within the Kent and Medway Care Records (KMCR) service, also of the horrid experience she and her husband have recently suffered in discussing DNR notices during a visit from a member of the frailty team. Penny felt she may be able to provide further support to explain how the KMCR works, with possible attendance at a future meeting of the Forum, and this was very much welcomed.
• Penny spoke of the continued activities provided by AWOC in the period between Christmas and the New Year, when most other organisations close down eg Boxing Day walk in Folkestone, Coffee Morning on Friday 29 December in New Romney, yoga on Saturday 30 December at the Hythe Sports Centre. Additionally, Asda at Canterbury welcome visitors free of charge on 27 December at their café. For further details please approach Penny directly at
• Attendees were pleased to hear that 13 places have been made available in local bed and breakfast establishments to house people off the streets between 1 December and 31 March.
• In reply to a question from Dudley, Cleo confirmed that the Dementia and Me co-ordinator is being inundated with referrals.
• Attendees were saddened to learn that Crossroads is now nearly closed in the Folkestone and Hythe district, with only six months’ reserves left. This is such an essential service and carers are very worried where their support will come from. Cleo confirmed that she has put in a grant application to provide similar support but the outcome is not yet known.

11. Dates of next meetings
Thursday 25 January 2024 at 10.00am in the Hythe Town Council Committee Room, Oaklands and then every fourth Thursday of the month at the same time in the same place, except for in August and December.
There being no further business, Dudley thanked everyone for attending and he closed the meeting at 11.15am. Attendees were welcome to go to Age UK Hythe for free refreshments.