Dementia screenings a sell-out in Sudbury

The Quay Theatre in Sudbury
The Quay Theatre in Sudbury

A dementia friendly screening of ‘An American in Paris’ at the Quay Theatre in Sudbury played to a packed audience last Friday, with more planned.

The film, starring Gene Kelly, was shown in a safe and welcoming environment, encouraging those with dementia, as well as their carers and families, to take the opportunity of attending a theatrical screening.

The warm reception and capacity crowd have ensured another dementia friendly screening will be coming to the Quay in May this year.

The attendees were able to watch the film in a friendly setting, with many collected and driven to the Quay by GoStart Community Transport free of charge, allowing residents of care homes from surrounding villages as far afield as Earls Colne to attend.

The screening was arranged by Suffolk Cinema Network, supported by Babergh District Council. It follows similarly successful showings of March of the Penguins and Breakfast at Tiffany’s at Hadleigh Pool & Leisure last year.

Margaret Maybury, portfolio holder for community capacity building and engagement at Babergh District Council, said: “This is only the latest of the dementia-friendly screenings we have run with the Suffolk Cinema Network here in Babergh, and the response, both from audiences and organisations such as the Quay and GoStart, has been phenomenal.

“There is a real appetite for these screenings and a warm and supportive community here in Babergh to make them happen and I’m looking forward to more screenings.”

A spokesman from Suffolk Cinema Network: “We’ve aimed these relaxed film screenings at people who are often cut off from arts and cultural entertainment due to frailty, behavioural changes and ill health.

“As a society we need to ensure that those living with dementia, their carers and families are welcomed into our arts venues and cultural spaces. Film can be a gateway to the past and a great connector and we are delighted that the screenings have been so well attended.”

Details of upcoming screenings will be published at www.suffolkcinemanetwork.org/