Former army chief lends his support to dementia group’s campaign

Lord Dannatt at work, with help from volunteer Lyn Hitchins, crocheting a forget-me-knot for the Wym

Lord Dannatt at work, with help from volunteer Lyn Hitchins, crocheting a forget-me-knot for the Wymondham Dementia Support Group's appeal for more Admiral nurses. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

The former head of the British Army, General Lord Dannatt, has shown his support for a group who are trying to save its district's Admiral nurses.

Lord Dannatt (Picture: DENISE BRADLEY)

Lord Dannatt (Picture: DENISE BRADLEY) - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

Lord Dannatt knitted the last forget-me-nots for the Wymondham Dementia Support Group campaign to collect 17,000 of the knitted or crocheted flowers – one for every person in Norfolk living with dementia.

The campaign was to highlight the axing of south Norfolk's Admiral nurses, who are specially trained in dementia care and offer vital support to carers, by South Norfolk CCG.

The CCG decided it was no longer viable to fund the nurses.

Lord Dannatt's wife is patron of the Wymondham Dementia Support Group. He attended the group's meeting yesterday where he knitted a couple of the little flowers.

He said: 'It means an awful lot to be here as I have heard a lot about what was going on from my wife.

'Admiral nurses are so much more cost effective than having somebody with dementia in care. It just makes sense.'

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More than 17,000 of the knitted flowers have been sent from across the country. The group's organiser, Dianne Fernee, said she would auction them off to raise money to fund nursing hours.

Mrs Fernee said: 'We want Admiral nurses to be as well known as Macmillan nurses.

'When you think that dementia is the biggest killer, those nurses should trip off the tongue like Macmillan nurses.'

Mrs Fernee will be holding a coffee morning to meet and say thank you to those who knitted a forget-me-not. It will take place at 10am on January 18 at the Fiarland United Reformed Church in Wymondham.