Award-winning play to visit Hethersett in bid to boost dementia cafe dream

Trevor Smith in An Evening With Dementia. Picture: Westgarth Productions

Trevor Smith in An Evening With Dementia. Picture: Westgarth Productions - Credit: Archant

It has taken millions from tears to laughter with its close to the bone portrayal of living with dementia.

And, later this month, An Evening With Dementia will have the same effect on audiences at its most intimate venue - Hethersett Village Hall.

It is hoped the one-man play, which soared to popularity after a performance at the renowned comedy Edinburgh Fringe Festival, will boost a bid for a dementia cafe in the village.

Hethersett South Norfolk Councillor David Bills is the chair of a six-strong steering group formed to create a 'dementia friendly' village.

'We are taking it very slowly - when we first met we had big plans but we have seen similar ideas go wrong, so we are taking it step by step.


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'It's an important cause to support and there has been a lot of encouragement from the village,' Mr Bills said.

It is hoped that the cafe would offer support and advice to those living with dementia and their friends and family.

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They were inspired by the success of Wymondham's Pabulum Cafe, which celebrated its fifth birthday in March.

The cafe, run by Trevor Brown, was instrumental in helping Wymondham become Norfolk's first 'dementia friendly' town. It now welcomes more than 40 people through its doors every Friday.

Mr Bills added that the group were 'very excited' to secure the show. 'It's done incredibly well and people are often very moved by it. We are looking forward to having it come to Hethersett.'

The moving play, created by Trevor Smith and Janet Westgarth, documents the life of an aging actor, played by Mr Smith, and his journey to accepting dementia.

Janet Westgarth, co-organiser, said: 'We have lots of requests for the show – more requests from the medical side now than theatrical.

'I love it because I know it is doing some good. We open it open to the audience afterwards so that they can share anything that they want to. It really awakens feelings in people. It became important to let people have an open discussion as they can end up sharing advice or comfort.'

An Evening With Dementia will be performed at Hethersett Village Hall, on Back Lane, on Saturday, September 27 from 3pm to 4.30pm.

Tickets cost £10. They can be purchased from Ivan Fisher Funeral Services, Stratford Estate Agents, Hethersett Library and Hethersett Hall.

For more information on the steering group, or to get involved, contact Mr Bills on 01603 813041.

Do you have a Hethersett story for us? Contact reporter Lauren Cope on lauren.cope@archant.co.uk

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