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Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Sunday 06 September 2020

Actor Calls On Brighton & Hove Residents To Support Alzheimer's Society's Memory Walk

Actor and Alzheimer's Society supporter Richard Hawley has recorded a personal message during a walk in memory of his dad.

The actor who lives with his family in Brighton, is best known for walking the cobbles as Johnny Connor in the ITV soap Coronation Street. 

He's taken time to support the UK's leading dementia charity"s most popular fundraiser, Memory Walk.

Alzheimer's Society is urging 820 people across Brighton and Hove – the exact number that attended last year's Memory Walk in Hove Lawns, Hove – to take part in a very different version of the event this year.

With the Coronavirus pandemic bringing large fundraising events to a halt, the charity is seeking to replicate 2019's success with hundreds of smaller walks.

For Richard, who in previous years has join hundreds walking in Brighton and Hove, it was a much quieter affair this time. 


He completed his own walk in familiar territory, visiting Ilkley Moor in Yorkshire where he spent many years with his dad, Peter, before he died with Alzheimer's disease.

Richard said on the day of the walk

"I'm up on Ilkley Moor by the famous Cow and Calf rocks and we walked here many, many times.

"Now this place has such deep memories for me. And do you know when I'm up here, I realise that we walk these moors forever, me and him.

"It's time to take a step closer and find a cure. Together we can do it. So please, if you want, sign up to do a Memory Walk."

The charity expects many of its supporters will arrange walks to coincide on 20th September, the day before World Alzheimer's Day 

However, it stresses that walks can take place any time between now and October.

Linda O'Sullivan, Head of Region for Alzheimer's Society, said: 

"People with dementia have been worst hit by coronavirus, not just in terms of deaths. 

"More than half a million people have used Alzheimer's Society"s support services since to start of the pandemic, with many calling them a lifeline.

"Our trained staff have taken thousands of calls to our Dementia Connect Support Line and as our face-to-face and group services remain suspended, we've reached out to those in need through welfare and companion calls, making more than 115,000 of these so far.

"Like many charities Alzheimer's Society has been badly hit financially despite its services being in more need than ever before.

"This is why it has never been more important to raise money to help us reach and support more people through our vital services."

This year"s Santander-sponsored Memory Walk is free to sign up, where people will find support to organise their own walk. 

People may choose to walk alone, with members of their household or another household - in line with latest government guidelines.

Sign up now at memorywalk.org.uk and with every step, you'll help change the lives of people affected by dementia.

by: Mike Cobley




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