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Elinor holds Memory Fest in honour of grandfather

Elinor Dodgson
Elinor Dodgson

An Argyll woman is organising a special event in aid of Alzheimer’s Research UK following the death of her grandfather.

Elinor Dodgson wanted to raise money for dementia research after her grandfather, George Dodgson, was diagnosed with dementia in 2013. He sadly passed away last month.

Now she has organised Memory Fest – a rocking night of live music from the 70s, 80s and glam rock era. It will be held on Friday October 28 at The Wide Mouthed Frog Hotel and Restaurant in Dunstaffnage Marina, Oban.

Miss Dodgson, who is originally from Leeds, works at Taychreggan Hotel near Oban as a general assistant.

Memory Fest will include a live set from Glasgow-based singer, Simply Mo, and other artists. There will also be a quiz, karaoke, disco and free food on offer for ticket holders. Fancy dress is welcomed and a prize of a night’s accommodation, free meal and wine from The Wide Mouthed Frog will be awarded to the best costume.

The 20-year-old first started fundraising for Alzheimer’s Research UK in July. She began a project called “A Challenge to Remember” where people could nominate challenges for her to undertake in exchange for donations to the charity.

Her parents, Stephen and Cathy, organised an event in May 2016 called Memory Fest in Kirkintilloch. The night of live classic rock music raised nearly £2,000 for dementia charities. As a result, Mr Dodgson decided to challenge his daughter to organise a second event, Memory Fest Oban.

The family was inspired to fundraise because of Elinor’s grandad (Stephen’s dad), who had a mix of Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia. He died at the age of 84.

Miss Dodgson said: “My grandad had always been a happy and relaxed man. He used to love travelling, playing golf and doing the odd spot of DIY. When he developed dementia, everything changed. He had no energy and was unable to care for himself, meaning he could no longer live at home.”

Originally from Colne in Lancashire, her grandfather spent most of his life in Newcastle working as a tooling and operations manager. He married his wife Shirley in 1955 and they had four children together.

Miss Dodgson said: “His diagnosis was devastating for the family, especially my gran. They’d been married for over six decades and her life was turned upside down. She is a very strong woman though and I am very proud of her.

“This experience has shown me just how many people are affected by dementia – not only the people diagnosed with it, but also their family and friends. Anything that can help people with dementia or can even find a cure is very important to my family and me.”

Alzheimer’s Research UK is the UK’s leading dementia research charity, powering studies into prevention, diagnosis and effective treatments for all forms of dementia. The charity’s research network brings together more than 1,000 specialist dementia researchers working to beat the condition.

Tickets for Memory Fest, priced at £10 each, can be purchased in the Wide Mouthed Frog or by contacting them on 01631 567005.

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