A member of a steering group which has helped hundreds in Wem become 'dementia friendly' has been left delighted by the level of support they have received.

Viv Edgar, who alongside George Rook, chair of the Dementia Action Alliance for Shrewsbury, Telford and Wrekin, Carole Warner, Wem Economic Forum clerk, Alwyn Thomas and Judy Freeman and Wem town councillor, and former mayor, Rosemary Dodd, has provided sessions for people in the town to become more aware of how to communicate with those living with dementia.

She put on a celebration event after the end of the first set of sessions at Wem Town Hall and thanked all those who have come forward to improve their awareness.

"We've now finished this group of awareness sessions but we think we will be starting again in March at Wem Town Hall and at Wem Cricket Club," she said.

"I have been pleasantly surprised by the amount of interest we've had in these awareness projects. More than 300 new people have become dementia friendly since we started the sessions.

"The age range of people who have been through it goes from six to 86, showing that all ages come into contact with people who live with dementia.

"We have been doing sessions for kids, which while it was hard work, they were brilliant because they didn't have the same preconceptions as adults do.

"It's important to become a dementia friend because small gestures can help people stay in the community and feel safe.

"Staff at the Co-op in Wem have been brilliant and we're working with them all to increase their dementia awareness."

The Co-op provided food for the event, which was also attended by Shropshire councillor Pauline Dee, who praised the work being carried out among groups which include the Brownies, Scouts and Beavers.

She added: "I am very pleased with the reaction of the people of Wem to becoming a dementia friend, which is a really god cause.

"Credit to Viv for all the hard work she has put in to make this a dementia-friendly community."

Darren Bowyer, who owns MotorCare in Wem, is credited as being the first 'dementia friend in the town, and he was delighted to be involved.

"I deal with a lot of older people and their cars," he said.

"I think I see the early signs more than most. I felt it was important to become more experienced in that, especially as I have been through it with my grandad."