£10,000 dementia health jackpot up for grabs

File image
File image

Dementia care in Tring could be in line for a £10,000 boost – but five months after the cash was made available not one penny has been claimed.

Herts County Council’s community wellbeing project Herts Healthy Homes awarded the five-figure sum to Dementia Friendly Tring (DFT) in April, as part of a wider grants project.

The agreement was for DFT to share the money to help smaller projects and groups which support people living with the condition.

But the committee’s former chairman John Allan says he has recently been quizzed by Herts Healthy Homes about how the money is being spent.

Mr Allan, who was a town councillor until he stood down at the May elections, said: “Herts Healthy Homes have contacted me wanting to know where their money has gone. As far as I know it has gone into the Tring Town Council (TTC) account.

“In March I announced to the council that TTC, in the form of Dementia Friendly Tring, had been awarded £10,000 to give out to organisations in and around the town to help their work with dementia.

“As far as I know the various organisations in Tring have not been told that they can apply for money, but there is a DFT meeting planned for later this month.”

Mr Allan was DFT chair until the new council was elected in, and it was in this capacity that he originally submitted the application for the grant awarded.

He had to surrender the position after he stepped down, as the role has to be filled by a current town councillor.

Currently there is a functioning monthly dementia cafe plus a pilot COGS club in the town, which caters for people with a mild form of the condition by focusing on the cognitive stimulation therapy.

A spokesman for Herts County Council said: “There has not been any suggestion that this money should be returned, and we will work with Dementia Friendly Tring to ensure the money is spent wisely for the benefit of the community.

“We want organisations to spend all grant monies we award to them and if there is an underspend, we will work with them to agree the best approach.”

Michael Curry, clerk for Tring Town Council, said the delay had been caused by a combination of the May elections and the summer holidays.

He added: “It’s not a problem in that we won’t lose the money, it will still be available.

“We apologise for the delay but this will mean that the scheme will have proper controls in place when we launch it in October so that it will go to the right people and have the biggest impact.”