Despite the weather, we were still able to go ahead with our Knowledge Sharing Day at mac birmingham last week, which brought together new and existing partners to share knowledge, celebrate year one successes, and set targets for year two of this important project, funded by Arts Council England.
Our Strategic Touring Project aims to break down barriers to attending theatre for those living with dementia and their carers. The Knowledge Sharing Day was a great opportunity to look at how this is working so far and make plans for the year ahead.
We were delighted to be joined by Ken, who is living with dementia. Ken spoke honestly and openly about the experience of being diagnosed and living with dementia. It was also a pleasure to welcome our new theatre partners, including The Royal Shakespeare Company, The Waterside Aylesbury, Cast Doncaster, mac birmingham and Cornerstone Arts Centre Didcot.
Returning for a second year were The Courtyard Hereford, Sheringham Little Theatre, and Arena Theatre Wolverhampton.
We are working with all our venue partners to remove barriers for carers to attend the theatre. Whether this is by providing transport to the theatre, increased carer discounts, temporary staff cover to provide respite, or a greater amount of Dementia Friendly performances during the tour. This year, for the first time, we will be taking our work into hospitals performing Sharing Joy at Princess of Wales Community Hospital, Bromsgrove. We are also responding to feedback from those living with dementia and their supporters, which will help our year two activity be even more accessible and pleasurable, including clearer signage and quieter foyers at venues for Dementia Friendly performances.
Thank you to all our fantastic partner venues for attending the day and for sharing their knowledge and experience. With their help and support, theatre accessibility for those living with dementia and their carers can get better and better.