Sir Geoff Hurst is among the faces who’ve shared a treasured memory in support of Alzheimer’s Society’s Forget Me Not Appeal.
The appeal, which runs throughout June, calls on the public to donate and wear a Forget Me Not badge to show those affected by dementia that they are supported, understood and not forgotten about.
The forget-me-not is a small blue flower that represents remembrance, so the charity has been asking people to share a memory they would never want to forget.
Casting his mind back to England’s World Cup victory in 1966, Sir Geoff Hurst said: “Naturally, my treasured memory is related to the World Cup. I remember going to the ground in the coach and people had a large banner which read ‘Nobby Stiles for Prime Minister’. When we were in the tunnel on the way to the ground, it felt like the whole country was there waiting for us to play. It sent shivers down my spine.”
Sir Geoff continued by reminiscing fondly about the memories he holds of the 90,000 people that watched the highly anticipated match, along with the rest of the country who supported the team, and receiving the trophy when England claimed their victory.
He added: “People around the world, still to this day, remember exactly where they were on that wonderful day on the 30th July 1966.”
Kate Lee, CEO of Alzheimer’s Society, said: “People with dementia may experience memory loss, among other symptoms, making the forget-me-not the perfect way to represent the condition.
“I loved going back and reminiscing about the special moments in my life as part of our Forget Me Not Appeal. I would be devastated if I lost those memories. Sadly, this is the harsh reality for many of the 900,000 people living with dementia in the UK today.
“I would encourage everyone to show those affected by dementia that they are supported, understood and not forgotten about by wearing a Forget Me Not pin badge, and taking some time to share those treasured memories with loved ones.”
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and for most people, the first sign of Alzheimer’s is experiencing problems with their memory. This could include forgetting recent conversations and events, having difficulties with day-to-day tasks, getting lost or struggling to recognise faces.
But there are practical ways that you can support a person with dementia who is experiencing memory loss. These include giving prompts such as asking ‘Have you had breakfast today?’, creating a memory box with photos and information about people in their life or using assistive technology like electronic pill boxes to remind them to take medication.
If you or someone you know is experiencing memory problems that are causing difficulties in day-to-day life, talk to your GP or contact Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Connect support line on 0333 150 3456.
Support people affected by dementia by wearing your Forget Me Not badge and help to fund life-changing dementia support by Alzheimer’s Society. Visit alzheimers.org.uk/forgetmenot for more information.
Listen here – Sir Geoff Hurst Forget Me Not Appeal memory_audio.mp3