Skip navigation.
Print this page | Text size: Larger / Smaller



Dementia is a term given to a group of symptoms from certain diseases which affect the brain. Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia. In the UK, there are about 850,000 people living with dementia.

The symptoms of dementia are progressive and on an unknown time scale, which can be hard to accept. It could be months or many years before the symptoms become advanced. On a positive note, many people with dementia can live full lives with little or no assistance. Living in the present, doing the fun things now which were planned for later in life is a strategy which helps some people cope with this condition.

Burgess Hill Dementia Action Alliance

Burgess Hill Dementia Action Alliance supports the local community and businesses to become Dementia Friendly, so they are better prepared and equipped to support those living with dementia, as well as raising general awareness of the condition and how to support those affected by it.

The Alliance aims to raise awareness through Dementia Friends Sessions, community and business events and general discussion of the needs of those living with dementia and their loved ones to best continue playing a full and fulfilling part in their community.

If you would like to get involved you would be very welcome to join the Alliance. For further information, email

Safe Havens

There are 3 Safe Havens in Burgess Hill town centre, located at:

Market Place Shopping Centre


Burgess Hill Town Council’s Help Point at 96 Church Walk


Burgess Hill Library

The Safe Havens provide dementia awareness trained staff and a quiet place for people affected by dementia to receive help and assistance, for example, help with orientation, transport information or locating a mislaid person or belongings. 

Dementia Friends

Dementia Friends Champions provide free dementia awareness information sessions for the local community. Contact local Dementia Friends Champions Colin Holden on 07710 908050, email, or Rachel Beckett on 07447 477755, email

A staff member at West Sussex County Council’s Library Service is also a Dementia Friends Champion and runs free information sessions for local groups and businesses. Contact 01293 651751 or email

Information and advice

Alzheimer’s Society provides information and support, funds medical and social research, and campaigns for better quality of life for people with dementia and greater understanding of the condition. Support in West Sussex includes support groups, advice and guidance. Dementia Support Workers offer information and practical guidance, face to face, over the phone or in writing, to help people understand dementia, cope with day-to-day challenges and prepare for the future. The Dementia Adviser service offers information about all aspects of living with dementia and supports people to access services. For more information or to access the services please contact the Sussex Helpline on 01403 213017 or visit the website

Alzheimer’s Society Sussex Helpline provides a wide range of quality information for people with dementia, carers, family, friends and health professionals. Topics include getting a diagnosis, types of dementia, emotional and practical support, legal and financial information, and choosing a care home. Contact 01403 213017 (Monday to Friday 10am - 4pm, answerphone outside these hours) or email

National Dementia Helpline is a national service run by the Alzheimer's Society providing information, advice, support, and signposting to other appropriate organisations. Callers speak to a trained Helpline Adviser and calls are confidential. Contact 0300 222 1122.  The lines are open Monday – Wednesday 9am-8pm, Thursday and Friday 9am-5pm and Saturday and Sunday 10am-4pm.

Talking Point is a live, online support community run by the Alzheimer's Society for people with dementia and their carers, family and friends to discuss all aspects of the condition. It's open 24-7, and is a safe place to ask questions, share your experiences and receive advice and support.  Visit

Dementia UK provides specialist dementia support for families through its Admiral Nurse Service. When things get challenging or difficult for people with dementia and their families, Admiral Nurses work alongside them, giving the one-to-one support, expert guidance and practical solutions people need. Contact Admiral Nursing Direct Dementia Helpline on 0800 888 6678 or visit

Know Dementia is a local charity providing advice and support for people who have been diagnosed with dementia. Contact 01273 494300, email or visit


Time For Dementia Programme

Time for Dementia is a training programmerun by the Alzheimers Society designed to educate undergraduate healthcare professionals to improve their knowledge, attitude and empathy towards people with dementia and their carers. Two university students are paired with a family affected by dementia and will arrange to visit them at hom eup to three times per year. The visits are a unique learning opportunity for the students but also a great opportunity for a family affected by dementia to share their experiences of living with the condition and help contribute towards a better future for people with dementia. For further information please contact 07713 779582 or email



Support groups & social activities

Memory Sing-a-Longs - free events with free tea and cake for people living with dementia and their carers. run on an adhoc basis by Burgess Hill & District Rotary Club. Usually takes place from 2pm - 4pm on a weekday. Visit the website:

Neil’s Club - for people with young onset dementia run by Crossroads Care South Central.  It offers age appropriate support, activities and outings for younger people with dementia.  The club meets every Thursday from 10am – 4pm, alternating between The Beech Hurst Harvester in Haywards Heath and Balcombe Social Club. Contact 01903 790270

De-Café - an evening group for people living with dementia, their carers, friends and family. It runs at Age Concern’s Pauline Thaw Centre in Dale Avenue, Hassocks, on the 3rd Wednesday of each month, from 6 - 8pm. The café provides a social evening in a safe environment, with light bites and sometimes live entertainment. It also provides an opportunity to meet others in a similar situation, to talk and learn from each other, and to receive support and advice from staff and volunteers of the Alzheimer's Society. Contact 01403 213017.


Meeting Point - welcomes people living with dementia and their carers to drop in for refreshments and chat each Saturday, from 10am – 12pm, at the United Reform Church, Junction Road, Burgess Hill. Contact 01444 244458.


Forget Me Not Café - for people living with dementia and their carers runs at St John's Church in the town centre. The café is held fortnightly on Mondays, from 2pm - 4pm. Light refreshments are available plus an opportunity to chat with other people. Activities include 'jog your memory' time listening to music, chair keep-fit, reminiscing with pictures and art all taking place in a safe, relaxed environment. Contact 01444 230499 or email


Sally Anne's Memory Lane Café - runs once a month at the Salvation Army Hall in Cyprus Road. The café is for people living with the early stages of dementia and their carers. It offers a morning of live music and fun filled nostalgia, all shared with light refreshments. Contact Envoy Dawn Shearn on 07900 996287.


Sunday Moments - provides an opportunity for people living with dementia and their carers to meet up informally for a Sunday walk and refreshments. Contact 01273 494300.


Dementia Adventure - a registered charity dedicated to enabling people living with dementia and their carers to continue to live full, satisfying lives through access to the outdoors and nature. By raising funds they are able to assist in underwriting the cost of supported holidays and short breaks. Contact 01245 237548, email or visit


Memory Moments Café (1) - 1st Saturday of every month, from 2pm - 4pm, for those with memory loss and their carers. An informal café including refreshments, with games, talks, music, dance, fun & laughter at St Richards Church Hall, Sydney Road, Haywards Heath, RH16 1QE. Contact 01273 494300, email or visit


Memory Moments Café (2) held monthly on Tuesdays, from 2.30pm - 4.30pm, for those with memory loss and their carers. An informal café including refreshments, with games, talks, music, dance, fun & laughter at St Richard’s Church Hall, Sydney Road, Haywards Heath. For dates & further information contact 01273 494300, email or visit


Alzheimer's Society Mid Sussex - The group is for people who have Dementia, are very functional and keen to have their say to improve the lives of people affected by Dementia.The group meets monthly in Haywards Heath and is involved in a number of projects, both locally and nationally. The groups is always looking for new members and for further information please contact the Sussex Helpline on 01403 213017.


Daybreak provides daytime activities for people living with Dementia. Lunch and refreshments provided. Held every Tuesday from 10am - 3pm at the Cherry Tree Centre, Fairfield Road, Burgess Hill and at The Yews Community Centre, 55 Boltro Road, Haywards Heath every Wednesday from 10am - 3pm. Contact 07904 977251 or email


Respite care

Crossroads Care South Central provides a tailored service of respite support for carers across West Sussex including an emergency respite scheme. Contact 01903 790270 or email Crossroads Care also run Dementia-Friendly Short Breaks at Roffey Park - for more information click here.

Forest View Care Home in Burgess Hill provides respite day care facilities from Monday to Friday for 20 people living with dementia, and 10 people on Saturday, with lunch provided. Contact 01444 245749 or email


Villa Adastra in Hassocks provides day care facilities from Tuesday – Friday for eight people living with dementia, with lunch provided. Contact 01273 842184.


The Elderberry Club offers a carer-focused respite service providing an opportunity for carers of people with dementia to take some time for themselves, knowing the people they care for are in a safe, stimulating environment. Lunch and refreshments provided, transport possibly also available. Held on the 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month, from 10.30am – 4pm at The Redwood Activity Centre, Perrymount Road, Haywards Heath. Contact 07840 652054 or email


See also Neil’s Club (details above) run by Crossroads Care South Central.

Support for carers

Burgess Hill Carers Support Group is a peer support group run by the Alzheimer’s Society, giving carers the opportunity to meet with others in a similar situation. Run by a facilitator, the sessions offer a chance to ask questions, get information and share experiences in a safe and supportive environment. Carers and the person they care for can also attend the group, which meets at The King’s Church, Victoria Road on the first Wednesday of each month, from 1.30 – 3.30pm. Contact 01403 213017. 

Carers Support Group at Villa Adastra, Hassocks run by Carers Support West Sussex. Meets on the 1st Thursday of each month (except public holidays), from 2 - 3.30pm. Contact 0300 028 8888 or email


Carers Support West Sussex provides information and support for friends, families and partners of people with a long-term health condition including memory loss and dementia.  They have a support worker for dementia carers in the area who can provide one-to-one support if needed. Contact 0300 028 8888 or email The Carers Response Line on 0300 028 8888 is open 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday, 9am – 7pm on Wednesdays and 10am – 12pm on Saturdays.


Online Personal Support - for four hours each day one of the Carers Support West Sussex Wellbeing workers is available to answer any questions or requests for information via an easy access chat window on their website. This offers an option for carers who prefer to communicate in this way or who may find it difficult speaking on the phone or in front of the person for whom they care. The Online Personal Support allows carers for whom English is not their first language to type in a language they prefer. Visit website The chat window in the bottom right hand corner of the screen shows the times the service is next available.


Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust Carers Health Team - the Carers Health Team Officer can offer professional support and guidance to maintain the health and wellbeing of carers aged 18+. Open 8am - 6pm Monday to Friday. Contact 01243 623521 or email


Neighbourly Care is a support and befriending charity run by volunteers providing practical help to people of all ages experiencing or caring for someone with illness, frailty, disability, social isolation or a sudden crisis. Neighbourly Care volunteers can offer company and a chat over a cup of tea, shopping for someone or with them, changing light bulbs, writing a letter, simple DIY jobs, or light gardening. Contact the Helpline on 07876 066368.


Carers Emergency Alert Card is a credit-card sized laminated card which will identify you as a carer if you are out alone and become ill or have an accident. Registering with the scheme provides information about the person you care for and the names of two people who can be contacted in an emergency. The scheme is free of charge to West Sussex residents. For further information
visit or telephone 01243 778688.

Pamper Day for Carers - an annual Pamper Day for Carers is held at Burgess Hill Girls in Keymer Road. The event is FREE to any local resident who provides unpaid care to a family member or friend. Pamper sessions include a professional hairdresser, manicures, gentle exercise and head & shoulder massage. Plus information and advice from a variety of carers support agencies, free ploughman's lunch and refreshments, free raffle,crafts and music played by the students at Burgess Hill Girls. All visitors are paired with a student who will look after them throughout the day. Look out for the next date in the local press, the Town Council's About Town Magazine and social media.

West Sussex Digital Offer for Carers
 - a free digital service for carers to sign up to providing information on caring, carers’ rights, problem solving and much more.  There’s also a free Carers UK mobile phone app called Jointly (free code DGTL2948) for those who want to organise or share care.  Once you’ve registered and want to return to your free Digital Offer page use and remember to make this a favourite in your browser.

Library services

Burgess Hill Library is a Dementia Safe Haven and members of staff have been trained as Dementia Friends. The Library provides the following resources:

Memory Management Library Card is for people living with dementia so they can borrow books and other items with no fines charged if they are returned late. It is also free to borrow audiobooks with this card.


Reading Well Books on Prescription for dementia recommends books that might be helpful if you have dementia, are caring for someone living with dementia or would like to find out more about the condition. The books provide information and advice, support for living well, advice for relatives and carers, and personal stories.


Reminiscence packs – for people living with dementia, their memories from years ago often remain detailed and intact. Recalling these memories can be immensely therapeutic and enjoyable. The Library has a Reminiscence Collection of packs and books, including the Pictures to Share books. The packs are on themes including the 1950s, 1960s, Baking, General, Household, Seaside, Transport, Washday and World War II.


Pictures to Share – reminiscence tools including song lyrics.


Housebound Reader Service - for people living with dementia or their carers who are unable to visit the library but would still like to enjoy reading or listening to books. Volunteers select, deliver and return library books to people who are unable to go to the library themselves.


Alzheimer’s Society Drop-ins - the Library also holds drop-ins with the Alzheimer’s Society. Contact 01444 255452 for information about forthcoming dates.


The Helping Hand Card is a new scheme being operated by local bus companies including Brighton & Hove Buses, Metrobus, Southdown PSV, Compass Travel, Stagecoach, Big Lemon and Sussexbus. The free card enables passengers who may need extra assistance to discreetly explain the help they may require without having to verbally communicate it.

The card will display simple advice to help the passenger/customer, such as “Please wait until I am seated”, “Please help me count my change”, “Please be patient if I am confused.” Further information and an application form can be found or by calling 01273 886200.


Travel factsheet - airports can be busy and confusing at the best of times. If you have dementia then these feelings are amplified many times and the airport can become bewildering. The Alzheimer's Society produces a factsheet with tips and advice about planning a holiday for people affected by dementia, including arranging travel insurance.


Gatwick Airport – a special lanyard can be provided for passengers to wear while at the airport. This will identify them to staff as someone who may need additional support or understanding. Members of staff have been specially trained to recognise the lanyards and act accordingly.


Lanyards can be obtained at one of the Assistance Reception areas, even if you haven't requested or need special assistance. Gatwick Airport has also produced a booklet, Making Your Journey Easier, where you can find detailed information on what to expect on your journey through the airport to help you prepare. For further information, email

Staying safe

People with dementia want to be as independent as possible and to remain in their own homes for as long as they can. Assistive technology is now available that helps them to do this, and makes it easier for others to be able to support them.

Chichester Careline provides a GPS device which can be worn by people with dementia, giving carers peace of mind and users more freedom. For further information, contact 01243 778 688 or email  Details of GPS devices can also be found on the Mindme website


People with dementia may seek to find or return to former associates, addresses, work places or other places that have been important to them. Knowing about these associations could be vital in helping to locate them quickly.


Missing Persons Form is available from Sussex Police to be completed in the event of someone with dementia going missing. This can also relieve some of the pressure on families of trying to remember everything at a distressing time.


The form should be completed, with a photograph attached, and retained by the family. (The Police do not hold a record of the completed form due to Data Protection compliance). It can be placed at the front of the care package paperwork so it can easily be located should the need arise.


If their loved one goes missing, the completed form should be handed to the attending officers to save crucial time and assist the police with locating them as soon as possible.

Dementia Action Week

Dementia Action Week is held annually in May. Information about local events will be available on the Town Council’s website and social media.