A dementia friendly garden, the first of its kind, has opened in Rothwell.
With support from local councillor Karen Bruce, the idea for the garden came from Peter Smith, the founder of the Rothwell Tea Cosy Memory Café. Based on Peter’s vision, this dementia friendly garden has been specially designed to provide a welcoming outdoor environment for people affected by dementia.
Coordinated by Cllr Bruce, the Outer South Community Committee donated £10k of wellbeing funds and Leeds City Council’s Housing Advisory Panel donated £5k towards the project to get the ball rolling and encourage donations from several other organisations making the idea a reality.
The garden offers a pleasant space with dementia friendly features for people of all ages and backgrounds to visit and enjoy the outdoors. The garden includes a range of dementia friendly seating; wide, smooth, simple paths; raised flower beds; handrails; notice boards to promote local dementia friendly initiatives and bold contrasting, colourful plants which are easier for people with dementia to see.
Councillor Karen Bruce, Chair of the Outer South Community Committee (Rothwell) said:
“I am delighted that Rothwell is leading the way in raising awareness and supporting those with dementia by opening the first dementia friendly garden in the UK.”
“Dementia affects hundreds of thousands of people across the country including many in our own communities so it is great that we can offer them this friendly outdoor space.”
“It reinforces our aspiration to make Leeds a Dementia Friendly Community, providing a safe garden for people living with dementia to visit and enjoy with their loved ones.”
“Importantly this garden will help change attitudes to dementia and develop understanding of the condition to enable people with dementia to live a full and active life. This is the first of its kind in a public green space and I hope it will inspire other localities around Leeds as well as other councils across the country.”