Share festive memories on special tree

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A dementia friendly hospital ward has been praised for encouraging visitors and patients to give a gift with a difference this Christmas.

Ward 26 at Blackpool Victoria Hospital has created a special memory tree alongside its Christmas tree for people to write their memories of the people they are visiting and leave them for others to read.

Visitors can write messages on butterfly shaped cards – a reference to the hospital’s policy of putting butterflies above patients’ beds to tell nurses they have a form of dementia or confusion. Francesca Hall helped to prepare the tree.

She said: “The Trust uses the Butterfly Scheme to help with treatment of patients and as one of the dementia champions on ward 26 I wanted to do something that would promote the scheme and get staff, patients and relatives talking about it.

“That’s why the memories are written on the back of small paper butterflies.

“The first memory to go on the tree was for my uncle Gino Chiappe who had dementia which is one of the reasons why I am so passionate about dementia care.”