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Tuesday 27 July 2021
Salford News Header Montage
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Hazel Blears ribbon cutting
Hazel Blears is pictured cutting the ribbon at the official opening

Dementia Courtyard is officially opened

A Dementia Courtyard has officially opened at Salford Royal to provide a relaxing haven for patients to help them reminisce.


Hazel Blears, MP for Salford and Eccles, cut the ribbon to officially open the garden and said it was a fantastic facility for patients and their carers.


The courtyard includes an old red telephone box and other props to trigger memories and start conversations between patients, their carers and nursing staff.


Ms Blears, whose late mum Dorothy lived with dementia for nine years and was a patient at Salford Royal, said: “This dementia-friendly courtyard will be a God-send for people with dementia who all have the opportunity to visit this beautiful place surrounded by flowers, fragrance and nostalgia.


“It is tranquil and calming and will stimulate memories, conversation and exercise.  It will make such a huge difference.


“Although we still don’t do enough in society to help people to live well with dementia, we can be proud of all the great things our local hospital is doing to make life that little bit better for people with this horrible disease.”

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Dementia Courtyard
Dementia Courtyard

The garden, located in Ladywell Building, is also used for safe, gentle exercise which encourages appetite and aids sleep.


The peaceful haven helps to reduce agitation and stress, which can occur as a result of boredom or being in unfamiliar surroundings.


Lesley Calvert, a former nurse who has recently been diagnosed with dementia, said the garden was well set out, relaxing and comfortable.


Her husband Sam said the garden would also benefit carers like himself, who may need a break or some timeout.


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Janice McGrory Jackie Marsh and Hazel Blears
Janice McGrory, Jackie Marsh and Hazel Blears

Janice McGrory, Salford Royal’s Lead Nurse for Dementia and Delirium, said: “Having a safe and peaceful area for patients with a cognitive impairment will encourage social interaction and a sense of well-being.


“Staff can spend time with patients in the garden and will gather a more personal insight into the individual while relatives can enjoy relaxing with their loved ones in a very tranquil environment.”


The new garden is part of an ongoing programme of developments as Salford Royal continues to improve its facilities in order to further enhance the quality of care and experience for patients with dementia.


Other dementia-friendly initiatives at the Trust include pop up Reminiscence Pods, which are used on various wards and departments, along with clearer signage around the hospital site, knitted dolls to provide comfort for agitated patients and refurbished day rooms.