14/05/2021 - Permalink

Dementia Action Week launch for Oswestry Library memory loss collection

Related topics: Adult social care / Health / Leisure, culture and heritage / Partner organisations

Oswestry Library, run by Shropshire Council, is to launch a new and wide-ranging collection of loanable objects for local people living with memory loss. The initiative has been largely funded by Oswestry Town Council, with an additional donation from Coverage Care’s New Fairholme.

Highlighting Dementia Action Week (Monday 17 May-Sunday 23 May 2021), the Oswestry Memory Loss Collection will be available following a launch ceremony at the library on Monday 17 May at 11am, when town mayor Councillor Duncan Kerr will be in attendance.

Siobhan Shaw, Oswestry Library branch manager, said:-

“We are delighted to launch this large collection of borrowable objects for people living with dementia and their supporters. Extending our existing resources, the new collection includes eight new Shared Memory bags featuring a 1950s/1960s approach to the themes of working life, music, leisure, childhood and Christmas. An Oswestry-themed memory bag will follow soon in collaboration with Oswestry Town Museum.

“Additionally, a wide range of loanable items is now available, including large-piece jigsaws, games, fidget widgets, therapeutic sounds CDs, conversation starters, song books and a range of other helpful books. All items are free to borrow or reserve by anyone with a Shropshire Libraries card.”


The new collection builds on library services already available to Shropshire residents living with memory loss. These include the Reading Well Dementia collection of professionally endorsed self-help books available in many branches and thirty themed Shared Memory Bags filled with conversation starters and sensory objects to prompt enjoyable, therapeutic stimulation. All Shropshire Libraries staff are trained Dementia Friends and the service is a member of Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Dementia Action Alliance.

Mirka Duxberry, Shropshire Council’s library development manager, added:

“We are very excited to launch this new library collection, knowing that it will enhance services for people with memory loss in our community. The Alzheimer’s Society reported in July 2020 that the pandemic Lockdowns have led to accelerated decline in cognitive function in people living with dementia, due partly to the lack of stimulating activities. Thanks to grants from Oswestry Town Council and Coverage Care, the library service can offer a timely and helpful response to this concern.”

Imelda Briones, manager of New Fairholme, said:-

“We are absolutely thrilled to be supporting this fantastic project, which will further support people in our local community who are living with memory loss. These themed reminiscence bags can provide extremely valuable prompts for people who have dementia, helping to stimulate happy memories and trigger enjoyable conversations. We’re certain they will be extremely well used, and we wish the library every success with this latest project.”

For further information about the Oswestry Memory Loss Collection, phone 01743 250351 or email heather.rodenhurst@shropshire.gov.uk.

Visit https://shropshire.gov.uk/media/18666/omlc-catalogue.pdf to explore the collection and place reservations.

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