Dementia Friendly Community

Dementia Friendly Honiton is a volunteer led charity that promotes inclusion in all areas of community life for anyone touched by dementia.

We were proud to be named by the Alzheimer’s Society as “Dementia Friendly Rural Community of the Year 2016” and to be presented with the Queens Award for Voluntary services in 2019. Both awards are displayed in Allhallows Museum one of our Dementia Friendly Organisations

We offer Dementia Awareness sessions for community groups, businesses, High Street shops, youth groups and members of the public who live in or around Honiton.  To date we have helped to create over 2000 “Dementia Friends” of all ages, and numerous community organisations and shops along with Honiton Community College and Honiton Scout Pack qualify to publically display our Dementia Friendly Honiton sticker. 

To become a Dementia Friend, you will learn more about the five key messages

  • Dementia is not a natural part of ageing. … 
  • Dementia is caused by diseases of the brain. … 
  • Dementia is not just about losing your memory. … 
  • There is more to the person than dementia. … 
  • People can still live well with dementia.

Our sessions are free and last about one hour to find out more contact us on 07966135442 or 

Please also get in touch if you are an Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Champion and would like to help us offer more Dementia Friends sessions locally

You can also become a Dementia Friend on line at

What have we done to help create a safe and inclusive place for people with dementia and their families to live in?

1. We actively listened to people in Honiton living with dementia.

A small survey was undertaken asking a selection of people living with dementia and their families what support they felt they needed to carry on living well with dementia in our community.

The top three leisure activities that respondents indicated they would like support to carry on doing were – Eating out, visiting the theatre and cinema, and walking.

Pub Lunch Group

Through Honiton Memory Café, we support a pub lunch group who meet regularly at various venues giving our Friends the chance to enjoy a meal out in some good company and to feel connected to the wider community

Memory Café Amblers

People living with dementia in Honiton told us that they valued walking for leisure so in collaboration with Walking for Health leaders at Leisure East Devon, monthly dementia friendly ambles have now been successfully in place for the past 5 years. Memory Café volunteers have been trained as walk leaders and volunteers drive us to the start of the walk in a community minibus On each walk there are usually 3 levels of amble to suit varying degrees of ability and they mostly end in a café for the all-important tea and cake!

Nostalgic Cinema

Film reel and projector

Watching live entertainment or a film in a cinema was a leisure activity greatly valued by many who took part in our survey. Being in an audience with others enjoying some form of entertainment not only lifts the mood but also help us feel connected to others and connected to the community around us. In collaboration with the Beehive Community Venue we have monthly Nostalgic Cinema afternoons which are dementia friendly but open to anyone to buy a ticket from the box office and attend. Find out what’s on via The Beehive’s website.

2. We have been raising awareness

We are passionate about enabling our community to be a safe, welcoming and inclusive place to be for anyone living with memory loss or dementia. We offer free Dementia Friends awareness sessions, some that are open to the public and others where we are invited into businesses, organisations and community groups.

Through working with the Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Friends initiative we have to date run over 100 sessions big and small and created over 2500 Dementia Friends across a diverse range of groups, organisations and individuals. Contact us to book a free bespoke Dementia Awareness session for your organisation link to our email address or you can do the session on line through the Dementia Friends website.

3. Some examples of groups across the community whom we have supported to become Dementia Friends

Thelma Hulbert Gallery

“Our volunteers at the Thelma Hulbert Gallery have enjoyed the dedicated Dementia Friends Awareness programme. The sessions have really helped them to understand more about dementia and use these insights to help our gallery visitors living with dementia and respond better to their individual needs.”

Fiona Page Turner, Thelma Hulbert Gallery

Honiton Tesco

As one of the more community focused branches of Tesco we have long known the tremendous benefit of actually taking the time to get to know and understand our customers, not just from a retail needs perspective but a social point of view.

Our community interaction and engagement has show us that our customers need to feel supported and cared for on a deeper level of that of club card points and special offers.

The training that nearly 80% of our colleague count have been offered and have received around the understanding of dementia and how it affects families and social groups has been invaluable. Through this training we can now not only understand and support those with dementia but it gives a deeper insight into a much wider range of different health care conditions. 

Through this understanding we have built better relations and developed friendships and social relationships more than we thought possible.

Duncan Sheridan Shaw, Community Services Manager Honiton Tesco

4. We have been creating a Dementia Friendly Generation

Honiton Dementia Action Alliance offer Dementia Friends session for groups of young people.

Honiton Scout Troup

Honiton Scouts are now Dementia Friendly and as their pledge have created some wonderfully colourful signs to put up around the home. The National Scout Leaders magazine has run an article on the work Honiton Scouts and Honiton DAA have been doing together.

The Scout Group members age 6 – 14 years find out about Dementia and how it can affect any family and how the person with Dementia sometimes cannot remember who their family are even if they live in the same house. They also learn to give people with Dementia more time to pay at a checkout for shopping as they may need to think about what notes, coins to use. The young people really learnt a lot and asked some really interesting questions. 

Helen Turner, Honiton 1st Scout Group

Honiton Community College

Students from Honiton Community College
Students from Honiton Community College

Honiton Community College 6th Form has a rolling programme of Dementia Friends sessions.

Students have the opportunity to attend Honiton Memory Café as volunteers and can in addition work on a specific Dementia Friendly project of their choosing.

“Honiton Community College Sixth Form has had a long-standing association with the Dementia Friendly Honiton which all of the students and staff have gained enormously from. Each student has Dementia Friends awareness training so they can embrace the Dementia Friendly Honiton within their daily lives and careers. This training and general awareness of Dementia has led to our students volunteering at the Honiton Memory Café and subsequently some have entered the medical profession from this initial seed of interest. We are particularly proud of being able to have such involvement with this charity and for our students be able to have this opportunity to make a small difference to people’s lives.”

Selena Burroughs, Director of Post 16