AT the June meeting Matron Madeleine Curran came from Warwick Hospital to tell of her experience of dealing with the problems of mental health.

She believes that dementia is now in the position that cancer used to be , when although it existed in large numbers it was kept secret and never spoken of. Now it is openly admitted and dealt with in every way possible, and she hoped that the problems of dementia would also become discussed more openly.

The most common form is Alzheimer’s but there are many other forms, and the main aim is how best to help those living with dementia. This is how best to regard it, not as suffering but as living with it, and how to help patients to enjoy life and take part as much as possible. She emphasized that the District and County Councils do as much as they can to achieve this for both patients and carers. Criticism should be avoided and when words become difficult music or touch sometimes has very good results.

From questions and comments at the end it was apparent that many in the audience were personally involved with one or more members of the family. Shipston has an excellent reputation for help and advice for anyone in this position but many problems still remain, including that of money for care.

The July meeting will be The Performance between the Ears, presented by Karen O’Connor, a unique behind the scenes view of her life as an international professional musician and how she now coaches performers to present themselves with confidence. This will be at 2pm on July 28 at the Townsend Hall. There will be no meeting in August.