Murals showing well-known Somerset landmarks are becoming major talking points in local specialist dementia-care nursing homes run by Camelot Care.
In particular the large mural of Wimbleball Lake on Exmoor (pictured) which has been installed at Camelot House in Wellington is proving a firm favourite with residents, prompting them to share their memories about the reservoir which has been a favourite destination for ‘days out’ since it was created in 1979.
Clare Woodhead, operations manager for Camelot Care, said: “We showed the people who live with us a variety of different images to find out which ones they would enjoy seeing on the walls of their home.
“Wimbleball Lake was a firm favourite, and they are so happy to share their memories of it with us.”
Clare has been following with interest the findings of research undertaken by Guys and St. Thomas’ Charity into the role of the arts in reminiscence, and how it can empower people with dementia.
“The pilot project run in London has provided good evidence that art can spark reminiscences in a way that measurably improves wellbeing in older people with dementia, and our new mural is certainly getting people talking,” said Clare.
As a result of the London study a range of practitioners are now using the arts in dementia care, with strong anecdotal evidence suggesting that this can be highly effective.
Camelot House and Lodge is currently hosting a national initiative to bring volunteers into the home to assist residents in creating their own art. The plan is for this to be displayed in a local pop-up shop to highlight to the local community the opportunities for living well with dementia.
Camelot Care is currently installing a mural featuring the pier at Weston super Mare in its Avalon Nursing Home in Bridgwater, and an image of Plymouth Hoe at Freshfields in Plymouth.