Chorley concert hits the high notes with dementia residents


Residents at an award-winning specialist care home in Chorley enjoyed a festive musical treat performed as part of a wider wellbeing programme.


The Lodge, a specialist dementia care home within Buckshaw Retirement Village, played host to the Christmas music concert, which was performed by Music in Hospitals & Care (MiHC). The organisation specialises in performing to people with all kinds of healthcare needs, including those with dementia and disabilities.


The charity, which has patrons including Dame Vera Lynn, Julian Lloyd Webber and HRH Duchess of Gloucester has connections with musicians across the country, who specialise in a variety of genres to perform to people in various care settings to help boost their mood and humanise clinical settings.


Residents enjoyed an afternoon of accordion music, which was supported by reminiscence activities, including exploring memories and experiences which participants associated with the music.

Music and live performances are thought to have a significant positive impact on people living in a care setting, especially those living with dementia. Several studies have been conducted to show the positive impact musical leisure activities can have on people with dementia.

One study, published in 2015 by the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, found that musical leisure activities, particularly singing was beneficial to working memory, executive function and orientation, where music listening had cognitive benefits on people with an advanced level of dementia. The study also found that singing and music listening were effective methods which helped to combat depression in mild Alzheimer’s type dementia.


Lisa Barnes, regional director for Hica Group, the not for profit organisation which operates Buckshaw Retirement Village, said: “The concert provided a great afternoon of entertainment for the residents. It was great to see so many getting involved and singing along to songs which will have brought back some fond memories for some of our residents.


“It is incredibly important for us to implement activities which are reminiscence led and evoke positive, happy memories. Our priority is to involve everyone to support inclusion and abolish loneliness or isolation, regardless of how complex residents’ needs are.  

“Events such as the concert are a great way for residents to enjoy themselves, but it’s also part of a wider effort to encourage participation, quality of life and to support physical and mental wellbeing.”


Director of North operations for MiHC, Jess Ingham said: “There has been significant research to suggest that musical led activities provide a big benefit to people living with dementia.

“Our sessions are very much person centred, and individually designed to suit the needs of the people taking part. We try and make sessions as interactive as possible, to encourage engagement and participation. It is always rewarding to see the difference music can have on a person living with dementia.” 


Buckshaw is part of The Hica Group, a not for profit organisation, which operates a portfolio of 17 residential care homes, five of which are for people with a learning disability, along with two retirement villages.  The company also runs a care at home service providing approximately 11,500 hours of support and care from four regional offices in the North of England.


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