About Broad Town Women's Institute

The Broad Town WI are a friendly group of women. We meet in the village hall on the 3rd Wednesday of each month, apart from December when we meet on the 2nd Wednesday. We start with our speaker so please arrive promptly at 7.30pm for a talk or activity which may be educational, inspiring, amusing and energetic.  After the talk we have time for socialising and refreshments.  This is followed by a short business meeting.  We also arrange visits to gardens, pubs, local attractions, and go on summer walks.  With a membership of 27 and growing we are keen to welcome new members. We have had a stall at the Broad Town summer Big Gig for the past few years supplying the festival goers with hot drinks and delicious homemade cakes.

We are affiliated to the Wiltshire federation of WI which in turn is part of the national WI allowing us to make a difference to campaigns such as reducing supermarket packaging, influencing the price of milk at the farm gate and accurate labeling food with the country of origin.  Current campaigns are helping to alleviate loneliness, improving hospital arrangements for carers of people with dementia, helping to reduce plastic waste and trying to end food poverty. 
There is also a dedicated college of further education; Denman college in Oxfordshire, offering the widest range of courses allowing WI members to learn new skills or further existing ones.
If you would like to meet some new friends in the village, have an opportunity to learn something new and maybe influence a national campaign why not come along one evening soon?  Visitors are always welcome and you can try us out without any obligation.
Broad Town Women's Institute - Events and Plans

Hopes and Fears Dementia Information - Dr Simon Manchip – Psycho-geriatrician, Swindon


  1. Dementia is a description of symptoms, rather than a diagnosis and usually has mixed and multiple causes. These include: Alzheimer’s; a disease due to abnormal proteins being produced in the brain, Vascular Dementia due to narrowing of small blood vessels in the brain, and long standing Parkinson’s disease.

  2. There is no specific diagnostic test available, but the diagnosis can be made from the history and a specifically designed memory test. A head Scan and Blood tests are usually done to exclude other possible diagnoses

  3. The symptoms of dementia are not just forgetting and short term memory problems, but also includes: loss of recognition of people and objects, speech quality deteriorates, apathy, loss of sense of smell, loss of ability to link information and personality traits become more exaggerated.

  4. It is increasingly common with age: by 90yrs old 1in 3 people will have dementia. This also means 2/3 people will be unaffected. The incidence is going down as risk factors are being more often recognised and managed earlier.

  5. Risk factors for Dementia include: smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, irregular heart rhythm (Atrial fibrillation), high cholesterol, Diabetes Mellitus. It is possible to reduce risk of Dementia by 40% if all of the possible risks factors are reduced.

  6. Protective factors include: regular daily exercise strenuous enough to make you mildly short of breath and put up your heart rate, a small amount of alcohol daily ; 1-2 units alcohol/day for women, 2-3 units for men. (1unit = 1 small glass of wine or ½ pt normal strength beer) and a Mediterranean diet, which includes mostly fresh vegetables, fruit and fish and is low in animal fat such as red and processed meat, cheese and other dairy products.

  7. Best practice management includes early recognition, daily exercise, use of drugs like Aricept, which will help to stabilise the disease for 2yrs aprox. Early recognition allows patients to put financial affairs in order, make a will, arrange power of attorney, make lifestyle choices, and for the general public to understand the disease better. The government is working towards more rapid diagnosis and more community support.

  8. The Meeting was attended by 2 local counsellors aiming to make Wiltshire “Dementia Friendly” along with Wiltshire County Council who are “Dementia Aware”. Wootten Bassett has been chosen as a pilot site. A memory café runs monthly for people with Dementia. Opportunities exist for locals to become involved in their campaign and a tool kit information pack and “forget me not badge” are available. There is also a research trial at Kingshill, Victoria Centre underway with opportunities for patients and families to take part.

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