During Dementia Week, the Bluecoat ran a series of themed workshops and events, and HOP attended Soul Journey to listen to artist and performer Sharon Marsden of Verd-de-Gris talk about her work with older people with dementia, living in the beautiful surroundings of the Calder Valley. The landscape and memories of it were a strong feature of the sessions, and Sharon talked movingly of the importance of the link between individuals and the landscape they grew up in, and how a longing for home can be very strong in people who are growing old in a different place from where they grew up.
Sharon worked with the group over a long period of time, sometimes through group art and reminiscence sessions and sometimes on a one-to-one basis. Together, they made an incredibly moving film, Soul Journey, featuring wonderful original music by Nina Perry, and poetry based on the content of the sessions by Liverpool writer Paula Sutherland.
You can watch the film and find out more about the project here.