CRAVEN officially became 'dementia friendly' with a launch outside Skipton Town Hall on Friday.

An Alzheimer's Society roadshow marked the launch, which was timed to coincide with the start of Dementia Awareness week, which runs until Friday.

The new organisation is formed from the Skipton and South Craven, and the Settle Dementia Action Alliances.

Alison Wrigglesworth, services manager at the Alzheimer’s Society, said: “We are delighted that Craven is making such positive efforts to become dementia friendly.”

The Alzheimer’s Society has two new dementia support clinics every month at Skipton's Dyneley House Practice when worried about their memory or caring for someone with dementia can book an appointment.

At Craven District Council, customer services and Skipton Town Hall staff have already received dementia awareness training.

Sharon Hudson, the council's communications and partnerships manager, said: “We’re delighted to be part of this initiative as we believe it’s really important for our staff to be aware of people with dementia and their needs. By working together we can increase our understanding, reduce stigma, make life easier for people, and help families to continue supporting their loved ones.”

Dementia Friendly Craven has secured funding from North Yorkshire County Council for a development worker, who will work with the market towns and villages in the district to make Craven communities more dementia-friendly. The development worker will listen to people with dementia and their families, bringing people together so they can say what will be helpful to them. There are also plans to establish a peer-support group for people with dementia, their families and carers, once the development worker is in post. Dementia Friendly Settle has been running a number of events throughout the week and will be giving a short talk at the Big Breakfast run by Churches Together on Saturday (May 18).