The Droitwich Spa Meeting Centre is celebrating after being awarded almost £175,000 in National Lottery funding.

The money will support the centre's work over the next four years with people living with dementia and family members or carers with disabilities.

The centre, which is open each Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10.30am to 3.30pm at the Droitwich Rugby Club, is a social club where its members and their care partners can come to enjoy the company of others in a normal community setting where they can relax, have fun, talk to others and get the help they need by participating in activities that address their emotional, cognitive and social requirements.

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The centre, the first of its kind in the UK, has been running since September 2015 and is staffed by a team from Age UK Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

Around 12 to 15 members attend each day, with some coming for just for one day each week, while others come for two or three days.

The new funding from the National Lottery Community Fund will remove uncertainty over the future of the centre and provide a stable environment that will contribute to the centre’s members and carers health and wellbeing.

Derek Radcliffe, chairman of the meeting centre charity, said: “Thanks to National Lottery players we will be able to continue to help local people living with dementia and their family members. This is important because it helps members and their family members/carers both to build relationships with others facing similar challenges and to create their own supportive circle of friends.”

Jeff Mayes, a former RAF flight lieutenant and member of the centre said: “I started to get dementia and everything went down from there. You feel as though you have got nothing left but this place has given me a purpose.

You can join in with whatever’s going on and have a good time. The people at the meeting centre are so good, They are there to look after you but they keep the spirit going all the time. It’s a very happy place. I don’t know how I’d manage if I didn’t have this place to come to – it fills a big hole in my life.”