Scotland Loves Local Streets and Spaces Award
Winner: Dementia Friendly Preswick
Work to improve lives and create colourful additions to a coastal town’s promenade has been recognised on the national stage.
The programme spearheaded by Dementia Friendly Prestwick has been honoured with the Scotland Loves Local Streets and Spaces Award.
Judges heard about the impact of an alliance’s work to make Prestwick Promenade more inclusive and accessible, using dementia-friendly principles to secure new brightly coloured benches, new signage, public art, and a road crossing which are enjoyed by the whole community.
Dementia Friendly Prestwick has worked – and continues to work – with organisations including Paths For All, South Ayrshire Council, Ayrshire Roads Alliance, Sustrans and the NHS.
The group has been doing walks for three years and spotted the potential for the promenade to be made better for those with dementia.
Trustee Julie Twaddell described the walks as a “complete joy”, adding: “We have people on our walks who maybe have not had the confidence to walk on their own for a while.
“Because we are a safe pair of hands, they can walk with us and walk with confidence.
“In terms of improving people’s mobility, mental health and social isolation, what we have done to the promenade has made it more accessible and inclusive. We’ve seen people enjoying the benches.
“The poetic wind vanes which were a public art installation are a lovely bit of whimsy that were designed with Alec Findlay and some of the walkers in our group who have dementia. So to see this really positive, upbeat, uplifting project be so warmly embraced by the community is great.”
Hugh Hunter, a South Ayrshire Councillor for Prestwick, has supported the group’s work.
He said: “This is a wonderful project to be involved with – and this is a beautiful promenade.
“What’s clear from this project is that if we get it right for people with dementia, we get it right for everyone.”
Runners - Up
Isle of Bute BID’s work to create Rothesay’s Al Fresco Square has been hailed as a lifeline to hospitality businesses. It turned a picturesque area of the town into a vibrant area for open-air dining, which has proven incredibly important in supporting the island’s economy over the past two years. Thousands of people have now enjoyed a meal there.
Falkirk Council’s £2.2m redevelopment of Zetland Park in Grangemouth is gaining plaudits as work continues to ensure it becomes a vibrant place. Once complete the project will deliver park improvements including a refurbished war memorial and historic fountain, a new play area and pump track, a naturalised former boating pond, a stage and outdoor events space and a rejuvenated Rose Garden.
Streets and Spaces was sponsored by South of Scotland Enterprise