THE Million Dollar Bash, which will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the iconic 1969 Isle of Wight Festival, will be the world's first dementia friendly festival.

Organisers All Wight Now said they had partnered with the charity Playlist for Life, which encourages people with dementia to create playlists of their favourite songs to unlock memories and stimulate areas of the brain affected by the condition.

The charity was founded in 2013 by broadcaster and writer Sally Magnusson, after her mother, who had dementia, died.

Playlist for Life chief executive Sarah Metcalfe said: “We are delighted to be teaming with the Million Dollar Bash to raise awareness of dealing with symptoms of dementia.

"The Bash sounds an exciting event with some great acts and bands that will resonate across the generations — but particularly with the age group who know all about what was happening in 1969 when Bob Dylan headlined.

“We know that the Island has an ageing demographic, so this is a great opportunity to spread our message.”

The charity has helped train 5,882 health and care staff since it was founded and has established 357 community help points nationwide — including five on the Isle of Wight.

The Million Dollar Bash will be held at the County Showground, Northwood, on August 31.

The lineup includes folk-rock legend Richard Thompson, rockers Wishbone Ash, former Fairport Convention star Ashley Hutchins’ band, Dylancentric, and 1969 Isle of Wight Festival veterans Julie Felix and Dick Taylor and Phil May of The Pretty Things.

The site will have clear signage, quiet spaces and accessible facilities to ensure that people with dementia feel comfortable, supported and enjoy the event.

Barbara Stephens, chief executive of Dementia Pathfinders, who is developing links with the dementia community and leading on the initiative to make the Million Dollar Bash dementia friendly and inclusive, said: “We will also be delivering dementia awareness training for stewards and volunteer helpers, enabling them to offer appropriate assistance to people with dementia attending the festival, promoting positive participation and minimising any negative impact of disorientation or distress."

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