Funding approved for two more Meeting Centres in Worcestershire

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In January 2020, Worcestershire County Council and the six district councils of Worcestershire announced they would be investing £540,000 from the County’s Business Rates Retention Pilot to help local communities across the county to set up specialist dementia Meeting Centres across, putting the county at the forefront of this new way of supporting those living with the condition and their families.

Earlier this year, funding for the first three centres – in Malvern Hills, Malvern Link and Worcester City – was approved by the joint University of Worcester and Worcestershire County Council Assessment Panel. Then in April, a new centre for Evesham was also approved.

Now, two further Centres have been approved – for Kidderminster and Stourport. All six successful applications have each been awarded funding of up to £60,000 to set up new Meeting Centres.

University of Worcester Fellow, Dorothy Wilson MBE, the independent chair of the Panel said: “The Panel was delighted to be able to approve funding for another two Centres and we are now looking forward to assessing the next batch of applications at our Panel meeting on 20 October 2021 for applications received by 30 September 2021.”

Magda Praill, Chief Operating Officer, Age UK Herefordshire & Worcestershire said: “We are really pleased to be awarded this grant, and we are looking forward to developing new Meeting Centres in Stourport and Kidderminster in the next few months.  Our work with the Meeting Centre in Droitwich has shown us how really important and impactful for those with dementia and family carers it can be, to be able to share and learn from others in similar situations as themselves.  We are really excited about being able to extend our support to people living with dementia and working with our partners at Age UK Bromsgrove, Redditch and Wyre Forrest and Sanctuary.”

Meeting Centres were originally developed in the Netherlands and were brought to the UK by the University of Worcester’s Association for Dementia Studies. A Meeting Centre is a local resource, operating out of ordinary community buildings, that offers on-going warm and friendly expert support to people with mild to moderate dementia and their families. At the heart of the Meeting Centre is a social club where people meet to have fun, talk to others and get help that focusses on what they need. Meeting Centres are based on sound research evidence on what helps people to cope well in adjusting to living with the symptoms and changes that dementia brings.

Councillor Adrian Hardman, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care at Worcestershire County Council, said: “We are delighted to see support being offered to help people living with dementia and their families in another part of the county and I look forward to seeing more successful applications over the coming months.”

Further applications can be submitted at any time up to 30 September 2021.  The application form, together with a number of supporting documents can be accessed via the University of Worcester website at

If you have any questions about the Programme and the application process please email