The Memories Café at Gloucestershire Heritage Hub

By Kate O’Keefe

Sunday December 1st – our last Memories Café at The Hub for the year.

The Memories Café has been a regular feature in our programme on the first Sunday of every month since the spring. Sunday afternoons can be an empty point in the week for some older people, so we decided to fill that space with companionship, conversation and cake. The café offers free refreshments, live music and activities with a nostalgic flavour. It is open to everyone and we take pride in making sure that all our customers have a good time. Many of our staff and volunteers are Alzheimer’s Society ‘Dementia Friends’, so people living with dementia and their friends and families can be sure of a safe and welcoming experience. We are very lucky to have the support of committed volunteers who help to make sure our customers have a friendly, enjoyable time with us. Our ‘regulars’ tell us that the café adds a ray of sunshine to their day:

We love coming here. Mum really looks forward to it.’

You’re all so good at making people feel relaxed.’

The December Café inevitably had a Christmassy theme. Ross and Lorraine shared some Christmas classics with us, and for a moment it was as if pre-Vegas Elvis really was still in the building, singing Blue Christmas. We all joined in with gusto (some of us with more gusto than was perhaps wise…)

Kate had taken advantage of her ‘natural’ (ahem) garden to bring in some of the ivy which grows so abundantly there. With added imagination and some foraged holly, we made ‘old-school’ festive garlands to which we added some contemporary bling. One of our customers was a former florist and helped us all to achieve some rather professional-looking results (even if I do say so myself).We’ll be taking a break in the winter months, all set to start up again in spring 2020.

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