Sensory therapy could offer dementia respite at Preston charity

Tranquil: The smallest of the three sensory rooms at Preston's Space Centre, which staff hope can be used by people suffering from the early stages of dementia
Tranquil: The smallest of the three sensory rooms at Preston's Space Centre, which staff hope can be used by people suffering from the early stages of dementia
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A multi-sensory charity which uses state-of-the-art technology to help people with disabilities is hoping to offer its award-winning facilities to support those facing dementia.

The Space Centre in Pedders Lane, Preston, has just won a national award for “utilising technology in an innovative and person-centred way to enhance the lives of others” in the 3rd Sector Care Awards.

The centre has three sensory rooms with a variety of high-tech features, such as projectors, light effects, music, light-up ball pools and soft play slides for groups of children, teenagers and adults with emotional, physical and behavioural disabilities to experience.

Now, staff are working towards reaching out to even more people, including those suffering with dementia.

One of the rooms is smaller than the other two and provides a more peaceful setting, equipped with water beds and massage chairs, to help those with muscle problems to relax.

Staff believe this would be ideal for elderly people, and are in talks with care homes.

Fund-raising co-ordinator Lyndsay Hornby said: “We are keen to offer sensory therapy to those who are in the early stages of dementia, so that they can familiarise themselves with our facilities and enjoy our small sensory room, cafe area and garden.

“This will hopefully allow them to continue coming here during the mid to late stages of the illness without too much distress or confusion.”

She added: “Plans are also underway to develop the gardens at the Space Centre, restoring them to their former glory and installing pathways so that they can be enjoyed by the thousands of people that visit Space each year, as well as members of the public.

“We are currently working with landscape architects in order to devise plans for the development, creating sensory opportunities whilst being mindful of the heritage and natural beauty of the gardens.”