My name is Rhys, a first time dad blogging about my adventures and experiences of being a parent. [email protected]

Sian Lloyd joins thousands going the extra mile at Alzheimer’s Society’s Cardiff Memory Walk

Sian Lloyd at Cardiff Memory Walk

A wave of Alzheimer’s Society fundraisers, including TV presenter and meteorologist Sian Lloyd, turned Cardiff blue on Sunday (17 September) at the charity’s Memory Walk, to help end the devastation caused by dementia.

The well-loved Welsh weather presenter joined over 1,500 walkers who took part in the 2-10km routes at Bute Park, raising money to provide help and hope to everyone living with dementia.

Sian Lloyd was one of many who stepped out at today’s event to celebrate or remember a loved one living with dementia. Sian walked in memory of her mother, who had Alzheimer’s, which was related to her Parkinson’s diagnosis.

Sian said: “It was so exciting to take part in Cardiff’s Memory Walk today. It was such a beautiful event, and it was amazing to take in the buzz of the crowds and the quiet moments of remembrance. Completing a Memory Walk gives people the chance to join forces in support of one goal: to help stop dementia devastating lives.

“Sadly, it seems that everyone you meet has some kind of connection to dementia, which is why it was so important to me to take on today’s walk and support the charity in providing help and hope for everyone affected.”

Dementia is the UK’s biggest killer, with one in three people born in the UK today going on to develop the condition in their lifetime.

Alzheimer’s Society is vowing to help stop the devastation caused by dementia, with money raised from the family-friendly sponsored walks going towards funding crucial research, faster diagnosis and supporting people living with dementia through some of the hardest and most frightening times. People can visit memorywalk.org.uk to find out more about the remaining Memory Walk events or to organise their own Memory Walk at a location and time of their choosing.

Speaking about her own personal connection to the cause, Sian continued: “It was obvious for five or six years before she passed away in 2019 that something was wrong. Her symptoms progressed so much that we had to seek residential care. This broke my dad’s heart, but like so many other people affected by this disease, we didn’t have a choice.”

The Cardiff Memory Walk is one of 24 sponsored walks across England, Wales, and Northern Ireland and are free to sign up. People are also being encouraged to take on their own walk at a time and location which suits them.

Geraint Roberts, from near Caerphilly, who is living with dementia, took part along with his wife Alison and dog Oscar. The trio were part of a group of 16 people with dementia and their carers taking part from Alzheimer’s Society’s Gwent group for younger people affected by dementia.

Alison said: “I’m walking for my husband Geraint and I think it’s really important to raise awareness of young person’s dementia. The event is inclusive as people are walking in memory of loved ones, while our group is about raising awareness of young people with dementia and how they can have a good life.

“We have carers here as well, as carers are important to this group and very active in making sure they have as good and active a life as possible.”

Also taking part was Chloe Sedgemore, a 24-year-old support worker from Rhigos, Aberdare. Chloe walked in memory of her nan, Rita, who had dementia. Rita sadly passed away in May this year.

“My nan was my world and will forever hold a massive piece of my heart. She was the ‘Queen of our hearts’ and forever will be,” said Chloe.

“I have worked in a care home with people who have dementia, so I know lots of families who have had help from Alzheimer’s Society. My nan would be so proud of us all for participating in this Memory Walk. There’s a group of 14 of us here today, all family and friends, and I know she’ll be looking over us all. She’d say, “you’d best move your bottoms and get there!”

“We cared for her and supported her until her last breath. Today is all about enjoying ourselves and remembering the good times.”

Kate Lee, CEO of Alzheimer’s Society, said: “It was incredibly powerful to see so many people coming together today.

“Every step taken will make such a difference to people living with dementia and their families.

“One in three people born today will develop dementia in their lifetime, but no one should face dementia alone. Memory Walks are a brilliant opportunity to gather your support network to celebrate and remember all those who have been devastated by dementia, helping us raise funds towards vital research, faster diagnosis, and support services which are so crucial to so many.

“I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has helped make this year’s Cardiff Memory Walk such a brilliant success.”

Alzheimer’s Society vows to end the devastation caused by dementia, providing help and hope for everyone affected during World Alzheimer’s Month and throughout the year. For more information or to make a donation, visit alzheimers.org.uk.