Dementia Friendly Mid Sussex

Hundreds of thousands of families are touched by dementia every year and many people don't know where to turn.  If you're worried that you, or someone you know, might have dementia, contact the Alzheimers Society National Dementia Helpline on 0300 222 1122 or email  Or call your local Sussex Alzheimer’s Society Helpline on 01403 213017 or email  The Sussex Alzheimer’s Society offers a range of services to support  those living with Dementia, their carers, families and friends. Find more information about Services in Mid Sussex.

Sussex Police - Helping people living with Dementia in our Community

NEW  - Missing Person Information Sheet

Sussex Police have launched their Missing Person Information Sheet to proactively work to help prevent a missing episode in relation to people living with dementia. If for whatever reason the vulnerable person goes missing, the idea is that their family have the form already completed to assist the Police in the prompt and safe location of their loved one. This can also relieve some pressure of trying to remember everything during this distressing time. The Missing Person Information Sheet is to be completed and retained by the family with an attached photograph (the Police do not hold a record of this completed form for data protection compliance). The rear of the form contains a useful information page with information of GPS trackers and who can supply them. If the loved one then goes missing, this completed form can be handed straight to the attending officers to save crucial time and maximise the effectiveness of our policing response.

Know Dementia Memory Moments Café in Haywards Heath

Come along on the 1st Saturday of every month for an informal café including tea, coffee & cake, a little fun & laughter with games, talks, music, dance at Haywards Heath Town Hall, 40 Boltro Road, Haywards Heath RH16 1BA 2pm - 4pm. Everyone is welcome, especially those with memory problems and their family supporter.

Become a Dementia Friend

A Dementia Friend learns a little about what it's like to live with dementia and then turns that understanding into action. This could be helping someone find the right bus or being patient in a till queue if someone with dementia is taking longer to pay. Every action counts.

Mid Sussex District Council has two members of staff from our Wellbeing Team who are Dementia Champions and able to deliver Dementia Friends sessions.  If you are interested in becoming a Dementia Friend, contact Paul Turner, Mid Sussex Wellbeing Manager Tel: 01444 477047 or email

Work is also going on in our three Mid Sussex towns (Burgess Hill, East Grinstead and Haywards Heath) to make them dementia friendly communities.

Burgess Hill

The Burgess Hill Dementia Action Alliance supports communities, businesses and individuals to become Dementia Friendly, be better prepared and equipped to support those living with dementia and raise general awareness of the condition and how to support those affected by it.

The Alliance raises awareness through Dementia Friends Sessions, community and business events and general discussion of the needs of those living with dementia and their carers. At the heart of the Alliance are those living with dementia and the Alliance is committed to consulting with them at every opportunity.

The Alliance held a very successful Virtual Dementia Tour conference in June 2015 and marked Dementia Awareness Week 2016 with a Vintage Routemaster stand in the town centre and a coffee morning alongside the Stroke Association.

The Burgess Hill Dementia Action Group has produced a leaflet on local support for those with dementia and their carers which is available here

East Grinstead

East Grinstead Dementia Action Alliance meets quarterly at the Library in West Street to exchange ideas and good practice and consider initiatives. They have a steering group who meet bi-monthly to ensure that action and initiatives are taken forward.  

The Alliance attend the Lions May Fair (May Day bank holiday Monday) to raise awareness and to encourage signing up for the awareness sessions.

Age UK in East Grinstead have a Saturday Morning Dementia Club which provides activities for those living with dementia and respite for their usual carers.

The EG Library has a memory management card for those who may have trouble returning books on time which ensures no charges for late books, and a range of ‘pictures to share’ books for family, friends and carers to share with people with dementia.  This range of titles can make communication easier, reduce boredom, depression and isolation, and encourage reminiscence whilst providing an enjoyable activity.      

The QVH introduced the Butterfly Scheme in 2013 – this scheme enables hospital staff to direct person specific care under the REACH (Remind, Explain, Arrange, Check, History) umbrella and is positively promoted.  Staff are enabled to manage patients’ needs on an individual basis through symbols and directed care.

Working together the team hope to raise awareness and help Dementia patients and their carers to carry on as part of the town in a familiar and caring way.  

The East Grinstead Dementia Action Group has produced a leaflet on local support for those with dementia and their carers which is available here

For further information please contact Chair Julie Holden  or Secretary Kate Bennett at

Haywards Heath

The Haywards Heath Dementia Action Alliance (HHDAA) is formed of members who are local residents and professionals. Its aim is to help people with dementia feel part of the wider community, raise awareness of dementia and improve the quality of life for those living with dementia and their carers.  These are some of the small steps in building a ‘dementia friendly’ community.

The Haywards Heath Action Alliance provide free monthly Dementia Friends sessions at the Town Hall. These last for an hour and give attendees an understanding of dementia.  Alliance members are also able to provide free Dementia Friends sessions at schools, businesses and other agencies. 

The Haywards Heath Dementia Action Group has produced a leaflet on local support for those with dementia and their carers which is available here - Haywards Heath Dementia Action Group local support leaflet. (355.73KB pdf) (368.75KB pdf)

You can find more information about the Haywards Heath Action Alliance on the Dementia Action website:

To find out more, or contact Fatima Mirza, Community Liaison Officer on 01444 455694 or email

Helping Hand Card

The Helping Hand Card is a new multi operator card scheme to help customers is being administered by Brighton & Hove and Metrobus and supported by other operators including Southdown PSV, Compass Travel, Stagecoach, Big Lemon and The intention is to also get the card scheme rolled out to businesses, retailers and other public services across Mid Sussex.

The free card allows passengers/customers that may need extra assistance to discreetly explain the help they may require without having to verbally communicate it.

The card will display simple advice to help the passenger/customer,  such as “Please wait until I am seated”, “Please help me count my change”, “Please be patient if I am confused.”

Further information and an application form can be found here - Helping Hands Leaflet and Helping Hands Application Form, or telephone 01273 886200.

Dementia Friendly Mid Sussex is a partnership project involving West Sussex County Council, Mid Sussex District Council, East Grinstead Town Council, Haywards Heath Town Council, Burgess Hill Town Council, shops & businesses, community groups and local residents.