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Dementia Friendly Village

Hethersett Hall manager Cathryn Weed and district councillor David Bills in the overgrown woodland area.

A Hethersett residential care home is hoping to turn the village into a dementia friendly community. 

Hethersett Hall, which is part of the Barchester Group, is looking to improve local people’s understanding of dementia by fostering closer ties with the local community. 

The home currently has 60 residents which includes 22 in its dementia unit. Manager Cathryn Weed explained that she would like to “heighten awareness of dementia” in the local community. 

Mrs Weed is looking to launch an awareness programme which will include dementia sufferers visiting Hethersett under the supervision of carers and also encouraging local people to take a more active role in the life of Hethersett Hall. 

The process will start with the creation of a special woodland style garden area at the home which Mrs Weed is hoping will be set-up by volunteers from the local community. A large section of currently overgrown woodland and orchard within the grounds of the home has already been identified and it is hoped that work to clear the area and set up walkways and seats can be started in the near future. 

“My aim is to get Hethersett Hall and the community of Hethersett more involved with each other. We want to make people in the village more aware of dementia and to see our residents going into the village with local people welcoming them. It is important that the residents get out a little more, as well as having the community come to us,” Mrs Weed said. 

It is hoped to turn the currently overgrown woodland area into somewhere tranquil that can be enjoyed by residents and visitors. 

“I want local people to recognise Hethersett Hall as part of the community and as somewhere they feel they would ultimately like to come to or have their family members come to if they are in need of care. We want to let them know that we are not just another care home,” Mrs Weed added. 

Plans for the future already include sporting and recreational activities which are being discussed by Hethersett and the Meltons Sports Association at its next meeting in April. 

Anybody interested in helping with the creation of the woodland garden can contact Cathryn Weed on 01603 810478 or via e-mail by clicking here. The plans are being supported by Hethersett’s representative on South Norfolk Council, David Bills, who is also a key member of the sports association.