All aboard: seaside tour with a difference

Tour Guide 2.jpgResidents from the Lodge, the specialist dementia care home in Buckshaw Retirement Village, boarded a bus headed to Blackpool, stopping off at popular attractions including the Blackpool Tower, and Pleasure Beach – all without leaving the comfort of the retirement village.

Using a projector to display popular attractions, musician Karl Boyle, dressed up as a bus conductor and took the residents on a virtual tour of the resort, planning everything from the boarding of the bus to the destinations to include on the tour.

At each stop, the conductor encouraged residents to get involved by giving a description of each attraction and recalling their memories. He also sang songs relating to each destination.

Lisa Barnes, regional director of the Hica Group, which operates Buckshaw retirement village, said: “Reminiscence-led therapy is a really popular way of encouraging residents to engage with activities. It’s a good way to trigger familiar times and to get them thinking about their memories.

“Every detail of the tour was well planned, from the conductor’s outfit, to the stops that were made, including the theatre and ballroom.  For many of our residents, visiting the seaside was a favourable pastime, whether it be when they were growing up, or as adults.  It was great to see how engaged they were as they moved from place to place.”

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