utilities

Our bloggers

The Alzheimer’s Research UK Blog will keep you updated on the latest news and developments on a wide variety of dementia topics. We’ll feature authors from across our organisation, along with a range of guest Bloggers, who we’ve invited to contribute their unique perspectives on dementia.

 

Guest Bloggers

Dean Harrison
Dean Harrison
Dean Harrison is by profession an IT consultant and creator of the Workload Automation Programming Language for z/OS, but when not doing that he sings in various bands and now apparently writes poems too.
David Mowat MP
David Mowat MP
David Mowat was appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health on 17 July 2016, and has been MP for Warrington South since May 2010. Prior to his election to Parliament, David served as the chairman of Fairbridge, a charitable organisation in Salford which helps to improve the life chances of disadvantaged young people. He also served as a councillor on Macclesfield Borough Council from 2007 to 2008. Before joining the Department of Health, David was previously Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Financial Secretary to the Treasury (2012-2016), Member of the Scottish Affairs Select Committee (2010-2012), Member of the Joint Select Committee on the draft Financial Services Bill, Trustee of the House of Commons Pension Fund and on the Board of the Parliamentary Office for Science and Technology.
Warren Alexander-Pye
Warren Alexander-Pye
Warren Alexander-Pye has been working as a Construction Project Manager for over seventeen years and is currently an Associate Director with Mace. Warren was also previously a Territorial Army soldier for 16 years earning the Volunteer Reserve Service Medal. Warren is an advocate for improving mental health for all and is passionate about breaking down the stigma. He lives in East Sussex with his wife and two children and in his spare time he enjoys playing the flute, reading and gardening.
Shilpa Saul
Shilpa Saul
Shilpa is a blogger who sadly lost her mum to early-onset Alzheimer's. Find out more on her blog: http://mustbethemummy.com/
Denise Wallin
Denise Wallin
Denise's mum, Barbara, was diagnosed with early-onset frontotemporal dementia at just 59. She lives in a care home with support from Denise and her dad, Tony.
Rita Pepper
Rita Pepper
Rita Pepper lives in Northamptonshire with her two grandchildren. Her 39-year-old daughter Carla is in the late stages of familial Alzheimer's disease and is bedbound in a care home. Rita lost her husband Barry in 1993 to the condition, when he was in his 40s, and the faulty gene was passed down to Carla. Rita is doing all she can to raise awareness of inherited forms of dementia.
Mark Dallas
Mark Dallas
Dr Mark Dallas is currently a Lecturer in Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience at the University of Reading. He has been involved in dementia research for the last 8 years and is interested in understanding the role of glia cells in Alzheimer’s disease. Most recently he has become interested in examining microglia and their contribution to Alzheimer’s disease and this vital research is also funded by Alzheimer’s Research UK, in a collaboration between two of the charity’s Network Centres. This type of collaborative research is necessary in our fight against dementia. In addition, he is also the Early Careers Representative for the Alzheimer’s Research UK Oxford Network, so is a keen advocate of young researchers starting out in career in dementia research.
Emily Allen
Emily Allen
Emily Allen, 31, became passionate about helping Alzheimer's Research UK after her mum Janet was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease when she was just 60. Emily makes regular trips from her home in Salford, Greater Manchester, to her family home in Reading, Berkshire, to help her dad with caring for her mum. Emily is the youngest of three sisters. Her sisters Liz Allen and Jane Cox are also media volunteers for the charity.
Siobhann Ardley
Siobhann Ardley
Siobhann is a 36-year-old mum-of-two from Cobham, Surrey. She ran the London Marathon 2017 in memory of her parents. Siobhann lost both her parents in 2016, her 68-year-old mum Annette Royce in August and her dad Michael Royce in November, a day after his 71st birthday. Michael had been living with Alzheimer’s disease for almost a decade, and passed away in a care home, while Annette died from liver cancer following a terminal diagnosis last June. Siobhann is no stranger to long distance running, she has also run the toughest footrace on Earth – the 250km Marathon des Sables - and a number of other ultra-marathons and Ironman challenges.
Amanda Brasher
Amanda Brasher
Amanda is a 49-year-old mother-of-three from London. She ran the London Marathon 2017 for Alzheimer’s Research UK in honour of her 82-year-old mother, Shirley Brasher (née Bloomer), who is living with Alzheimer’s disease. Shirley is a former world No3 tennis player and triple Grand Slam winner. Amanda’s father, who died with pancreatic cancer in 2003, was a co-founder of the London Marathon and an Olympic gold medal-winning athlete. Amanda is an independent retail consultant and a member of the Research in Breast Health Group at the University of Portsmouth.
Laura Brown
Laura Brown
Laura Brown is a fitness instructor from London, who aims to get more women involved in endurance races and raise as much money as possible for Alzheimer’s Research UK, in memory of her two nans. She is taking part in a number of endurance races throughout 2017 for the charity.
Bridget Hunt
Bridget Hunt
Bridget is a special needs teacher from York. She sadly lost her mum Rose to dementia with Lewy bodies in 2015, after a 14-year battle with the condition. Bridget wants to raise awareness about dementia with Lewy bodies, which commonly causes hallucinations and visual disturbances, as well as symptoms such as memory loss and confusion.
Cearon O'Flynn
Cearon O'Flynn
Cearon O’Flynn lives with his wife and three children in Chatham, Kent. He came up with his cycling challenge, CAstle RidE for Alzheimer’s, in memory of his nan Dorothy Stockey, who died with Alzheimer’s disease in 2004 at the age of 81. While working as a business solutions analyst he trained for the endurance challenge, which he completed in September 2016. The event involved cycling hundreds of miles round the 32 castles in Kent in just two days. He raised over £800 for Alzheimer’s Research UK.
Ross Proctor
Ross Proctor
Ross lives in Suffolk and is Internal Communications Manager for AXA Insurance. He has coordinated the charity champions at AXA for two years. As well as being the corner stone of the successful partnership between AXA Insurance and Alzheimer’s Research UK, Ross is responsible for many other activities under AXA’s corporate responsibility programme, AXA Cares. Ross believes in dementia research, “because dementia is a growing problem for our society and it's about time we had real options for treatment, prevention and a cure”.
Anne-Marie Heeney
Anne-Marie Heeney
Anne-Marie Heeney is a 23-year-old student from Birmingham. She is currently doing a Masters in English Literature and waitresses in her spare time, while also helping to care for her mum Bernadette, who has early-onset frontotemporal dementia. She was diagnosed when she was 50. Although it is very rare, this kind of dementia is genetic in Anne-Marie’s family.
Amanda Blanc
Amanda Blanc
Amanda Blanc lives in Hampshire with her husband and two daughters. She is the Group Chief Executive Officer of AXA UK & Ireland. In June 2015 Amanda led AXA's Leadership Team on a gruelling Three Peaks Challenge raising an outstanding £35,000 for Alzheimer's Research UK.
James Quinn
James Quinn
James is currently studying for a PhD at the University of Manchester. James' studies are taking a closer look at a protein called tau – a key hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia.
Grace Stead
Grace Stead
Grace Stead sadly lost her nan on her dad’s side to dementia in 2013. Her maternal nan has now also been diagnosed. The experience has caused Grace to start her own company – Enrichment for the Elderly – which offers creative workshops for people with dementia and training for carers. She’s seen the positive impact that her activities can have and hopes to spread awareness about dementia and how we can all help.
Kay Patrick
Kay Patrick
Kay Patrick is an actor and director from Stockport. After training at RADA, she acted in Doctor Who alongside William Hartnell and spent 20 years directing Coronation Street, leaving in 2015. Her sister was diagnosed with dementia in 2014. Kay has just written her first novel, 'The Trial of Marie Montrecourt', and is donating all of her proceeds to Alzheimer’s Research UK.
Clare Brien
Clare Brien
Clare Brien is a 19-year-old college student who has been caring for her dad since the age of 10. He lives with vascular dementia after suffering from a stroke. Clare studies law, English and history and hopes to continue to study law at university.
Chris Wright
Chris Wright
Chris Wright is a keen runner and fantastic fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Research UK. Originally from Sheffield, Chris now lives in Spain with his wife and kids. He lost his father-in-law to Alzheimer’s in 2015, not long before completing a year’s 5k-a-day running challenge.
Sean McGregor
Sean McGregor
Sean is a student from Yorkshire, currently in his third year at Northumbria University. He decided to fundraise for Alzheimer’s Research UK after his grandmother was diagnosed with dementia at the age of 68. He is taking on an impressive challenge in 2016 of cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats.
Adam Graham
Adam Graham
Adam Graham was inspired to support Alzheimer’s Research UK after his father died with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, aged just 66. Adam ran the Virgin Money London Marathon for the charity in 2015, raising thousands for pioneering research. Since then he has spoken out about his experiences to raise awareness of the need for dementia research and the need for better treatments for people with dementia.
Mariel Kirton
Mariel Kirton
Mariel Kirton is a blogger, sharing snapshots of her dad's life on Instagram (@endalzheimers_ray), following his diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer's at the age of only 52. She wants to tackle the stigma around dementia with her posts and illustrate the need for dementia research in support of Alzheimer's Research UK.
Alison Carter
Alison Carter
Alison Carter knows only too well how dementia can impact on families – her dad John was diagnosed with vascular dementia in 2007, aged 71. Her mum Leslie looked after him at home with the help of carers and Alison. John sadly passed away in 2016. Both mum and daughter are determined to raise awareness of dementia and Alzheimer’s Research UK’s crucial work to defeat it and have shared their story with the media many times, including national radio and TV broadcasts. Alison and Leslie are Champions of Alzheimer’s Research UK, an accolade given to a handful of supporters in recognition of their outstanding efforts to help us beat dementia.
Maria Tortora
Maria Tortora
Maria Tortora is doing a PhD funded by an Alzheimer’s Research UK Scholarship at Imperial College London. Her work will focus on a new model of studying the protien tau, build up of which is seen in Alzheimer's disease
Amy Macdonald
Amy Macdonald
Amy Macdonald is a Scottish singer-songwriter who has released four top five albums Europe-wide, including two number ones in the UK and three in Germany. To date, the 30-year-old has been awarded platinum status 12 times with over five million album sales. Amy has played to 3.2 million people worldwide, including over one million in the UK alone. To date, Amy has played nearly 400 concerts in 20 countries. Spring 2017 saw Amy’s best-selling UK tour, selling out all dates including London’s Royal Albert Hall. In August 2017 she was presented with an award by Universal Music to mark 12 million combined sales. Her debut album This Is The Life charted at number 1 in five markets around the globe. The lead single of the same name reached number one in 10 countries. Her second album Life In A Beautiful Light charted in the top 10 in over 10 countries. In February 2017, Amy released her fourth studio album Under Stars, which entered at number two in the UK album chart and peaked in the top 10 of the album charts in Germany and New Zealand. A live version of the album, Under Stars: Live in Berlin, was released on November 24, 2017, and was recorded at the Berlin Tempodrom. Amy has racked up over 100,000,000 streams on Spotify, with 770,000 monthly Spotify listeners.
Neil Graham
Neil Graham
Dr Neil Graham is an Alzheimer’s Research UK Clinical Research Fellow at the Division of Brain Sciences, Imperial College London. He studied medicine at Cambridge and University College London, developing an interest in acquired brain injury during training posts at St Thomas' Hospital and the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. His research interest is the relationship of traumatic brain injury (TBI) to dementia. Supervised by Prof David Sharp, he is focused on the development of imaging tools that can measure brain degeneration in patients after TBI. He is aiming to improve our ability to diagnose significant head injuries when they take place and working towards treatments that could prevent brain degeneration after injury.
Mark Bennett
Mark Bennett
Mark Bennett is one of our Campaigners whose powerful voices are persuading politicians up and the country to get behind dementia research. Mark's mum is living with dementia. He wrote to his MP, Jeff Smith, about his experience and asked him to help keep dementia research a government priority.
Davina Hensman Moss
Davina Hensman Moss
Dr Davina Hensman Moss is a Neurology Registrar and Clinical Fellow. She has just been announced as the winner of the Jean Corsan Prize for the best scientific paper published by a PhD student at Alzheimer’s Research UK’s 2018 Research Conference in London. We caught up with her to find out more about her award-winning paper and her work on Huntington’s disease.
Jess Edwards
Jess Edwards
Jess Edwards (28) lives in Essex and works at a London based insurance company. She is taking part in Alzheimer’s Research UK’s first ever overseas trek to Guatemala in April 2018 to help raise funds for dementia research. She feels passionately about the work Alzheimer’s Research UK does because her nan is living with dementia.
Avnish Goyal
Avnish Goyal
Avnish Goyal is the Chairman of Hallmark Care Homes.
Sally Rasmussen
Sally Rasmussen
Sally Rasmussen is from Harrogate in North Yorkshire, and recently took part in Alzheimer’s Research UK’s first ever overseas trek in Guatemala. She works in marketing and is passionate about raising funds for dementia research.
David Ward
David Ward
David Ward is a participant in the National Survey and the Alzheimer’s Research UK funded Insight 46 study that is investigating brain health and dementia risk in this group. David is a former Guardian journalist who now works for Theatre by the Lake in Keswick, Cumbria.
Stephen Fry
Stephen Fry
Stephen Fry is an English actor, screenwriter, author, playwright, journalist, poet, comedian, television presenter and film director. Whilst at university, Fry became involved with the Cambridge Footlights, where he met his long-time collaborator and friend Hugh Laurie. As half of the comic double act Fry and Laurie, he co-wrote and co-starred in A Bit of Fry & Laurie, and took the role of Jeeves (with Laurie playing Wooster) in Jeeves and Wooster. Fry's acting roles include the lead in the film Wilde, Melchett in the BBC television series Blackadder, the titular character in the television series Kingdom, a recurring guest role as Dr Gordon Wyatt on the crime series Bones, and as Gordon Deitrich in the dystopian thriller V for Vendetta, Mycroft Holmes in Warner’s Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows and The Master of Laketown in Peter Jackson’s Hobbit trilogy. He has also written and presented several documentary series, including the Emmy Award-winning Stephen Fry: The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive, and is also the long-time host of the BBC television quiz show QI. He played Prime Minister Alistair Davies in the 9th season of Fox TV’s 24: Live Another Day. As well as his work in television, Fry has contributed columns and articles for newspapers and magazines, appears frequently on radio, reads for voiceovers and has written four novels and three volumes of autobiography, Moab Is My Washpot, The Fry Chronicles and his latest, More Fool Me. A new sitcom for CBS, The Great Indoors, aired in both the US and UK in the spring of 2017.
Bill Gates
Bill Gates
Bill Gates is co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In 1975, Bill Gates founded Microsoft with Paul Allen, and led the company to become the worldwide leader in business and personal software and services. In 2008, Bill transitioned to focus full-time on his foundation’s work to expand opportunity to the world’s most disadvantaged people. Along with co-chair Melinda Gates, he leads the foundation’s development of strategies and sets the overall direction of the organization. In 2010, Bill, Melinda, and Warren Buffett founded the Giving Pledge, an effort to encourage the wealthiest families and individuals to publicly commit more than half of their wealth to philanthropic causes and charitable organizations during their lifetime or in their will.
Mike Curtis
Mike Curtis
Mike Curtis is a geologist from Northamptonshire. He took on the Everest Marathon in May 2017 with his partner Christine, in honour of his father Lance, who is living with Alzheimer’s disease.
Lorna Kenny & Harriet Cole
Lorna Kenny & Harriet Cole
Sisters Lorna Kenny and Harriet Cole signed up to Alzheimer's Research UK's Guatemala Volcano Trek 2018 to raise money for dementia research after seeing firsthand how heartbreaking dementia is. Their dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2015.
Steve Boryszczuk
Steve Boryszczuk
Steve is a handyman and Alzheimer’s Research UK fundraiser from Market Rasen, Lincolnshire. He gave up his job as a lorry driver a few years ago to look after his wife Michelle, who sadly died of familial Alzheimer’s disease in 2013, at the age of 44. Since then he has made it his mission to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s, and fundraise for dementia research. In 2017, he ticked off the last item on Michelle’s unfulfilled bucket list for the charity in her honour, by trekking over 100km through the Himalayas to Bhutan.
Helen Williams
Helen Williams
Helen Williams has been a professional photographer since starting out as a photojournalist straight from university in 1998. Helen then spent eight years as ITV’s in-house photographer, working daily on programmes such as Emmerdale, Heartbeat and A Touch of Frost. Afterwards she went it alone as a freelance photographer while training as a triathlete. After representing Great Britain as an age-grouper at the 2008 World Triathlon Championships, and completing her fourth Ironman event in 2009, Helen hung up her athletic boots and focused on starting a family. She now lives with her husband and two children in Harrogate.
Adele Lotes
Adele Lotes
Adele is the primary carer for her partner Lance, who is living with behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia. They live together in Brailes, Warwickshire. She wants to raise awareness of early-onset dementias and rarer forms of dementia, and the need for a cure.
Jess Fleig
Jess Fleig
Jess has been passionate about raising awareness of early-onset dementias and rarer forms of dementia ever since her father was diagnosed with the familial variant of the disease in 2011. She currently works as a charity press officer and journalist in East Anglia.
Steve Andrews
Steve Andrews
Steve Andrews is the Head of Chemistry at Alzheimer’s Research UK’s Drug Discovery Institute at the University of Cambridge. He decided that he not only wanted to power research as a scientist but also wanted to fund it and has taken on a series of challenges which will culminate in taking on Alzheimer’s Research UK’s Guatemala Volcano Trek in April 2018. Steve has been passionate about dementia research ever since he lost his nan Simone Andrews to vascular dementia in 2007.
Lucinda Hurrey
Lucinda Hurrey
Lucinda has a background in corporate marketing and communications, and recently moved to work in the third sector. She is currently a Project Officer for Silver Sunday, a progamme by the Sir Simon Milton Foundation to help combat isolation and loneliness amongst the elderly.
John Hirst
John Hirst
John Hirst is a 64-year-old retired industrial chemist living in Stockton-on-Tees. His wife Pat was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia in 2012 and died in July aged 66. John cared for his wife until 2015 when she went into a care home. John is in the middle of a fundraising challenge to complete eight 5km parkrun events in places that were important to his wife, with the final run at his home parkrun of Tees Barrage in February 2018.
Andy Morris
Andy Morris
Andy is Event Director of Poolsbrook parkrun and one of the top Running Down Dementia fundraisers, having raised more than £5,000 in two years. He was inspired to raise money for dementia research as his mum Peggy, who died last year, had vascular dementia. Andy, who lives in Chesterfield and works as a laboratory manager, completed 250km in the first year and more than doubled that in 2017. Andy is also a parkrun Outreach Ambassador for Dementia as part of the PROVE (parkrun, running or volunteering for everyone) project, helping make parkruns around the country more accessible to people with dementia and their carers.
Ozge Gunes
Ozge Gunes
Ozge 'Oz' Gunes is from Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire. She graduated in 2011 and currently works for Rexam Beverage Can as a laboratory analyst. Fundraising is completely new to Oz and searching for an opportunity to push herself to new levels, she decided to sign up for the fundraising challenge of a lifetime: to cycle 450km in Vietnam.
Sarah Moore-Fitzgerald
Sarah Moore-Fitzgerald
Sarah Moore Fitzgerald is an academic specialising in teaching and learning. Late at night she writes fiction. Her debut novel, Back to Blackbrick, is published by Orion and explores themes of memory and forgetting, informed by her own experience of her father's dementia.
Rosemary Westwell
Rosemary Westwell
Rosemary Westwell is a teacher and writer living in Cambridgeshire UK. Publications include books on language teaching and learning and an autobiographical novel: ‘John, Dementia and Me’. She directs a ladies’ choir ‘The Isle Singers’. Her husband is in a care home and they have two daughters and six grandchildren.
Russell Grant
Russell Grant
All round entertainer Russell Grant is a passionate supporter of dementia research and recently took part in the ICAP Charity Day, raising funds for Alzheimer’s Research UK.
Susie Hewer
Susie Hewer
Susie Hewer is a strong campaigner and fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Research UK and has been made a Champion of the charity in acknowledgement of her outstanding support. Otherwise known as ‘the Extreme Knitting Redhead’, Susie has just completed her 48th marathon to raise money for our vital research. Since her mum Peggy died with vascular dementia in 2005, she has raised over £30,000 for the charity. Susie was the first person to run a marathon while knitting and set the Guinness World Record for creating the longest scarf over the 26.2-mile distance.
Rob Perry
Rob Perry
Rob Perry is an Alzheimer’s Research UK media volunteer. His mum, Sandra, was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia in 2011, aged 52, and sadly passed away in October 2013. Rob helped care for his mum and is determined his family’s experience will help raise awareness of the desperate underfunding of dementia research.
Kevin Zokay-West
Kevin Zokay-West
Kevin worked for Iceland frozen foods as a store manager for 33 years. Iceland staff have helped raise £1 million a year for the past 3 years by holding events in its stores during its charity week every August. Kevin's mum was diagnosed with vascular dementia in 2011 and passed away in August 2013. During this time he has been a member of the London supporters group that help out at events and arrange events of their own to help raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer's research UK
Dorothy Parnell
Dorothy Parnell
Courageous great-grandmother Dorothy Parnell gave pioneering dementia research a boost after taking part in a tandem skydive to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK. Dorothy, 84, took on the challenge with her grandson Mark Cudmore. Together the pair raised over £1,000 from their challenge, which they took on in memory of Dorothy's husband Mike, who died in 2009 after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease.
George Freeman MP
George Freeman MP
George was elected to Parliament in 2010 after a 15 year career in biomedical venture capital. Formerly a Director at Merlin Biosciences, CEO of Amedis Pharmaceuticals, and Founder and Chairman of 4D Biomedical Ltd, George has spent most of his career supporting high growth businesses. He has spoken and written widely on the potential of UK science, technology and entrepreneurship to lead a sustainable economic recovery. In July 2011 he was appointed Government Adviser on Life Sciences, working closely with the Department of Health and launching the Government’s Life Science Strategy and Innovation, Health and Wealth report and the Agri-Tech strategy, and was appointed a UK Trade Envoy in January 2014. He is a frequent contributor in the national press, writing on the need for patient empowerment and health reform.
Barney Norris
Barney Norris
Barney is Co-Artistic Director of Up In Arms Theatre Group. Barney’s plays are Visitors, Fear Of Music and At First Sight. His first pamphlet of poems, Falling, has just been published, and his first book, To Bodies Gone: The Theatre of Peter Gill, is forthcoming from Seren. Theatre as director includes I Cinna (St James Theatre), Ashes (Arcola Theatre for the Miniaturists) and Schnapps (Lyric Hammersmith). He is an associate of Out of Joint, runs workshop programmes for Salisbury Playhouse and Southampton Nuffield, and leads workshops at theatres across the country. His theatre writing is represented by Julia Mills at Berlin Associates and his fiction writing is represented by Laura Williams at Peters, Fraser and Dunlop.
Arthur Smith
Arthur Smith
Arthur Smith is a stand-up comedian from Balham, London. He has written West End plays including An Evening with Gary Lineker and The Live Bed Show and is a regular presenter on BBC Radio 4 and 4 Extra. In his new show, Arthur Smith sings Leonard Cohen (Volume 2), he talks about his mother’s dementia journey.
Tom Macpherson
Tom Macpherson
Tom Macpherson, a retired research laboratory manager from Glasgow, recently completed his first fundraising challenge for Alzheimer’s Research UK by doing his own self-led 184 mile walk along the Thames Pathway. His journey (the equivalent distance of just over 7 marathons) took him 18 days and has inspired friends, family and even strangers to donate and raised over £5000 for Alzheimer's Research UK.
Steve Berry
Steve Berry
Steve Berry is an author and freelance writer for TV, magazines, newspapers and the internet. He gave up what little career he had to act as a carer for his mum, Janet, after her diagnosis with Alzheimer’s disease until her death in 2009. He has appeared on countless radio and TV shows talking about dementia and his specialist retro subjects – TV, toys, sweets and snacks – including Channel Five's Greatest Moments series, UK Gold's Porridge and Doctor Who weekends, BBC Four's The Hard Sell and C4's Top Ten TV and 100 Greatest Toys. Follow him on Twitter at @unloveablesteve.
Hannah Golden
Hannah Golden
Hannah Golden is a second-year PhD student, funded by Alzheimer’s Research UK. She works with supervisors Dr Jason Warren and Dr Sebastian Crutch at the Dementia Research Centre, Institute of Neurology at University College London. Her work focuses on Alzheimer’s disease and the auditory world. This involves looking at how people with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease process sounds in the brain, using psychological experiments and brain imaging. She also works as a Research Assistant on other longitudinal studies of dementia such as frontotemporal dementia. Previously she studied BA Experimental Psychology at University of Oxford.
Ben Barribal
Ben Barribal
Fundraiser Ben Barribal lives in Hampshire and is married to Toni, and together they have three daughters; Pippa and identical twins Verity and Matilda. Ben was born and bred in the farming industry, the family working in both the arable and dairy businesses. Ben moved into the corporate world in his late 20s and has been working in recruitment ever since. In 2011 he established Barribal Associates, a niche recruitment business focussed on the senior finance market place.
Tim Shakespeare
Tim Shakespeare
Tim Shakespeare is an Alzheimer's Research UK funded Research Fellow based at the Dementia Research Centre in Queen's Square, part of University College London. In 2013 he began a three-year study to help increase our understanding of posterior cortical atrophy (PCA), a rare condition most often caused by Alzheimer’s disease, using advanced imaging techniques to study changes in the brain.
Nicky Clark
Nicky Clark
Nicky Clark is the mother to two girls, both disabled and is a writer, carer and blogger. She’s campaigned on the issue of promoting positive attitudes towards disabled people and the elderly. Nicky was also primary carer for her mum who died from Alzheimer's in 2011. She has written for The Guardian, The Independent, New Statesman, C4 News and Mencap Magazine.
Trisha Macnair
Trisha Macnair
Dr Trisha Macnair works part-time as a Specialty Doctor in Medicine for the Elderly at Milford Hospital, and at the Royal Surrey County Hospital in Guildford, UK. Her clinical interests include all aspects of geriatrics but especially the management of acute crises in the frail elderly, dementia and ethical issues especially around the end of life. For the rest of the week she works as a freelance health journalist, writing both for the public and health professionals. She regularly contributes to radio and writes for many magazines, journals and papers, with columns in Yours Magazine and in Peverel’s Lifestyle. She has also written a number of books.
Rupert Stroud
Rupert Stroud
Singer-songwriter Rupert Stroud lost his much loved grandma Eileen to Alzheimer’s in 2009. Heartbroken by her death, he put his feelings into words and released a charity single entitled Always as a tribute to her, with all the proceeds from downloads being donated to Alzheimer’s Research UK. Rupert has an ongoing programme of music concerts in different parts of the country to raise even more money for the charity. He has taken part in countless media interviews, has spoken movingly at our public meetings, and is keen to get more young people involved to raise awareness of dementia. Rupert recently became an Alzheimer's Research UK Champion.
Lee Pearse
Lee Pearse
Lee Pearse is 40-years-old, lives in Sheffield and is a Youth and Adult Training Partnership Manager at the charity Heeley City Farm. He’s also a writer, filmmaker and Associate Lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University. Lee volunteers for dementia awareness and set up the Valerie Foundation, dedicated to providing creative projects and respite opportunities for people affected by dementia. He has recently been made a Champion of Alzheimer’s Research UK in recognition of his exceptional support for the charity.
Beth Britton
Beth Britton
Beth Britton is a freelance campaigner and consultant, writer and blogger specialising in issues affecting older people, health and social care and specifically dementia. Her work has been described as 'Terrific,' 'Amazing. REAL story of dementia,' 'Insightful, heartfelt and truthful,' 'Moving and inspiring.'
Marianne Talbot
Marianne Talbot
Oxford philosopher and writer Marianne Talbot lost both her parents to dementia. After her father died with vascular dementia, her mum, Lesley, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Marianne brought Lesley to live with her and looked after her for five years before making the hard decision to put her into care. She published a book entitled Keeping Mum: Caring for Someone with Dementia, which chronicles their experience together, and a percentage of the proceeds are donated to Alzheimer’s Research UK. An accomplished public speaker, Marianne has spoken on many occasions at events and through the media to raise awareness of the need for more funding for research.
Jamie 'JJ' Hamblett
Jamie 'JJ' Hamblett
Jamie ‘JJ’ Hamblett is a member of chart-topping pop group Union J who shot to fame on the ninth series of The X Factor in 2012. They are signed to Sony Music subsidiary RCA Records. Their debut single Carry You charted at number 6 in the UK top 40, with their follow-up song Beautiful Life, also making the top 10. Both tracks were taken from their self-titled debut studio album, released on 28 October 2013.
Chris Carling
Chris Carling
Chris Carling is an author and business and career coach from Cambridge. She supported her parents when they developed dementia of different kinds at the same time. Throughout her family’s journey she kept a journal, which she later turned into a book. Called But Then Something Happened: A Story of Everyday Dementia, it is part-narrative, part-handbook; but also a true love story.
Seth Rogen
Seth Rogen
Seth Rogen is a stand-up comedian, actor, producer, director and screen-writer. He has co-written and starred in films such as Superbad and Pineapple Express. He's a passionate dementia campaigner, and is a founding member of Hilarity for Charity with his wife and fellow actor Lauren Miller. The group raise awareness and funds for dementia care, support and research. Last year, Seth supported Alzheimer's Research UK by donating signed memorabilia to the ICAP Charity Day auction.
Tim Rittman
Tim Rittman
Tim Rittman is a neurology registrar and dementia researcher based at Addenbrookes hospital Cambridge and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. His research tries to understand how dementia affects the brain dementia by examining brain networks using advanced brain imaging techniques.
Lucy Ponder
Lucy Ponder
Lucy lives in East London with her boyfriend, and joined Michael Page two years ago. She sits within the National Accounts team which service over 40 clients nationally, ranging from SMEs to global blue-chip organisations. Michael Page is comprised of 25 disciplines – each providing a service to a specialist area of the market. Lucy recruits permanent, temporary, contract and interim opportunities, typically from second/third job levels upward. Lucy became involved in fundraising for Alzheimer’s Research UK earlier this year, and has since baked Halloween cakes and run a Friday afternoon bar to raise money, as well as organising the Michael Page fundraising day in London on 20 November 2014.
Jill Walton
Jill Walton
Jill Walton currently works as a nurse advisor to and coordinator of 5 young onset dementia care support groups affiliated to the Dementia Research Centre at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. With over twenty years nursing experience, she has degrees in psychology and gerontology and has combined practical caring with academic research and learning. Jill firmly believes that the people with a diagnosis of dementia, as well as those caring for and interacting with them need to be well informed and resourcefully equipped. In addition to her work with support groups , she is the founder of ‘Dementia Dimensions’ a resource through which she delivers tailored training courses and presentations to a range of professionals, in the belief that a raised awareness and a relevant knowledge base creates changes in attitudes, skills and practice which ultimately ‘enhance care through understanding’.
Emma Healey
Emma Healey
Emma Healey wrote her first short story when she was four, told her teachers she was going to be a writer aged eight, but had learnt better by 12 and had decided on being a litigator (inspired entirely by the film Clueless). It took another ten years before she came back to writing. She grew up in London where she went to art college and completed her first degree in bookbinding. She then worked for two libraries, two bookshops, two art galleries and two universities, and was busily pursuing a career in the art world before writing overtook everything. She moved to Norwich in 2010 to study for the MA in Creative Writing at UEA and never moved back again.
Sarah Ryan
Sarah Ryan
Sarah Ryan is a final-year PhD student working on frontotemporal dementia and motor neuron disease (MND) at the University of Manchester. In particular, her research focuses on understanding how an error in a gene called C9ORF72 causes dementia and motor neurone disease in people. Previously, Sarah has completed a BSc in Neuroscience at the University of Leeds and an MSc Neuroscience at King’s College, London, which included a period working in an Alzheimer’s disease research lab.
Valerie Blumenthal
Valerie Blumenthal
Valerie is the author of eight critically acclaimed novels. Several have been translated and have enjoyed considerable success, particularly in France, Germany and Holland. Valerie has also written short stories and features for various magazines and newspapers, most recently for the Saturday Times Colour Magazine and for YOU Magazine. She is currently wringing another novella; however, progress has been hindered by PCA, an unusual form of Alzheimer’s disease. Valerie has taught creative writing for many years, including in a high security men’s prison.
Sophie Tudor
Sophie Tudor
Originally from Melbourne, Australia, Sophie lives in East London and joined PageGroup in May 2014 in the Marketing Dept. She is responsible for PR in UK, Ireland, North America, Middle East and South Africa and managing the company’s charity partnership. Since starting her role at PageGroup, Sophie has helped the company fundraise over £100,000 for Alzheimer’s Research UK and ensured employees are continually engaged in fundraising activities and initiatives. Sophie also organises PageGroup’s biggest annual fundraising event, the Yorkshire Three Peaks, which raised over £36,000 for dementia research last year in June.
Dr Dervis Salih
Dr Dervis Salih
Dr Dervis Salih is an Alzheimer's Research UK Senior Research Fellow, working at University College London. Dervis is interested in understanding the molecular links between ageing, diet and Alzheimer's. Before joining UCL, he trained at the University of Cambridge and Stanford University, California.
Martin Yelling
Martin Yelling
Martin is a regular writer and coach for health, fitness and running media. He is the current coaching advisor to Men's Running magazine and has written for many different titles including The Guardian, Evening Standard, Metro, Running Fitness, Triathlon Plus, Outdoor Fitness, Trail Magazine and London Marathon News.
Grace Turner
Grace Turner
Grace is a 13 year old student at Honley High School in Huddersfield.
Tammaryn Lashley
Tammaryn Lashley
Dr Tammaryn Lashley is an Alzheimer’s Research UK funded research fellow based at Queen Square Brain Bank at the Institute of Neurology, part of University College London. Tammaryn has been working at Queen Square Brain bank for 15 years concentrating her research on underlying disease processes in dementia. Her fellowship focuses on the frontotemporal dementias and identifying unique changes that occur in this large, diverse group of dementias.
Clemens Kaminski
Clemens Kaminski
Clemens is a professor at the University of Cambridge developing optical microscopy techniques that permit one to 'see' the molecules that cause Alzheimer's disease in the brain. He has received funding from Alzheimer's Research UK to build a so called optical super resolution microscope that can see objects 1000 times smaller than the width of a human hair. His group is using it to conduct research on the disease.
Sue Bourne
Sue Bourne
Sue Bourne is a film producer/director. She has developed her own genre of documentaries that begin with a personal experience and attempt to say something more universal. Her films have seen her knock on the doors of all the houses in her London street for My Street for Channel 4, visit a number of pubs around the country with the most popular pub name in Britain for The Red Lion, also for Channel 4, and put together the story of her own experiences with her mother’s Alzheimer’s disease for Mum and Me for BBC1. A famed observational documentary maker, Sue reveals an intense commitment to her subjects.
Dr Claire Michel
Dr Claire Michel
Dr Claire Michel studied biochemistry and genetics in France, her home country, before moving to the UK, and embarking on research into Alzheimer's disease. Three years ago, she joined the Laser Analytics Group at the University of Cambridge – a team of physicists and engineers who are experts in the design of specialised microscopes, such as ‘super-resolution’ microscopes – to take part in their growing research into neurodegenerative diseases. She is now leading their research on the spread of tau, a protein involved in Alzheimer’s, from cell to cell.
Laura Hughes
Laura Hughes
Laura is a 29 year old psychology graduate from Wales. She now lives part-time in London and when she is not travelling the world she supports those with dementia in the community. Laura has always been interested in dementia research but has supported Alzheimer's Research UK since losing her great-grandmother, and great friend, to the disease in February 2012.
Steve Hallam
Steve Hallam
Steve lives in South West London with his wife of eleven years and sons. He has worked at PageGroup for over thirteen years and runs two specialist disciplines within Page Personnel; Secretarial & Human Resources. Page Personnel is a subsidiary of PageGroup, a FTSE 250 company with over 37 years of experience in professional services recruitment. His passion is recruitment; however his true love is cycling. He is now looking for a new challenge with his Trek road bike following a 300 mile cycle from London to Paris in May 2014.
Dave Golder
Dave Golder
Dave Golder is a professional geek. When, aged 16 he told his school careers officer he would make a living editing a science fiction magazine, he was told to stop dreaming. He didn’t, and a few years later became editor of SFX, the world’s leading magazine for sci-fi TV, films and books coverage. He’s also written for the BBC Focus Magazine, Total Film, Sci-Fi Chronicles and Music Week. His biggest claim to fame is getting the name of a character incorrect in a review of a David Gemmell book, only to see David Gemmell use that name in his next book
Insight Investment
Insight Investment
Leading asset management company Insight Investment is headquartered in London and employs over 480 people. They have pledged to raise £100,000 for Alzheimer's Research UK’s dementia research, increasing this target from £50,000 after a hugely successful first year. Their amazing staff have already raised £80,000, funding a ground-breaking research project aiming to improve early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, and a study looking into the genetics of dementia.
Theresa O'Dwyer
Theresa O'Dwyer
Theresa O’Dwyer became an Alzheimer’s Research UK media volunteer after her husband Peter was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Peter lived with Alzheimer’s for six years, the majority of which Theresa cared for him at home. Since making the decision to speak publically about Peter’s life with Alzheimer’s, Theresa has taken part in several media interviews to raise awareness of the disease and of the charity’s pioneering dementia research.
Baber Malik
Baber Malik
Baber Malik did a degree in Psychology at the University of Hull, before moving to the University of Sheffield to study for a PhD in Neuroscience. He got involved in dementia research because he wanted to understand more about the brain and how psychological assessments can be used to learn more about the changes the condition causes. His research focuses on cross-cultural dementia research. Baber has benefited from funding from the Alzheimer’s Research UK Yorkshire Network to fund some of the studies in his PhD.
Amanda Franks
Amanda Franks
Amanda Franks lives in Swindon, Wiltshire and owns a commercial recruitment agency, Frankly Recruitment. Amanda became a supporter of Alzheimer’s Research UK after learning about the massive underfunding of the condition her mother has lived with since she was 58. Along with her extended family, Amanda raised over £15k for Alzheimer’s Research UK in 2014 with The Gig to Remember – Bringing the Bootleg Beatles and Duke Beatbox to Swindon’s Oasis. Want to know more about Amanda’s story? See www.thegigtoremember.com.
Rachel Harris
Rachel Harris
Rachel Harris is a PhD student with Prof Seth Love at the University of Bristol. She’s interested in the complex link between blood supply and brain health.

Our Bloggers

Hilary EvansHilary Evans
Hilary is Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, which is a charity working at a global level towards a world where people are free from the fear, harm and heartbreak of dementia. The organisation’s aim is to raise awareness of the diseases that cause dementia, to increase dementia research funding and improve the environment for dementia scientists in the UK and internationally. Alzheimer’s Research UK is at the forefront of challenging people’s perceptions of dementia, finding innovative ways of communicating and creating new platforms to engage the public in a united fight to defeat dementia. Hilary joined Alzheimer’s Research UK in 2013 to drive forward the organisation’s profile and influence, working closely with the G8 and the World Dementia Council as part of a global commitment to find treatments by 2025. As part of this program, Hilary is pioneering new ways of supporting research, including setting up the Dementia Drug Discovery Institutes, the Global Clinical Trials Fund and the Global Dementia Discovery Fund. Hilary has a strong background in the charity sector, having previously worked for Age UK and Age Concern. Hilary has also worked in policy roles in corporate affairs.
Ian WilsonIan Wilson
Ian, Executive Director of Fundraising and Communications, joined Alzheimer’s Research UK in September 2013 and is responsible for leading our fundraising, marketing and communications activities. In order to defeat dementia it is critical that Alzheimer's Research UK continues to build awareness and understanding of the key issues at hand, and to raise the funding needed to drive forward our research programme. Alzheimer’s Research UK receives no government funding for our research and therefore we are reliant on the generosity of the general public to help meet our vision of a world free from the fear, harm and heartbreak of dementia. Prior to this appointment, Ian was the Head of Campaigns at Cancer Research UK with the responsibility for delivering funding towards a number of multi-million pound projects within the organisation.
Tim ParryTim Parry
Tim is Director of Communications and Brand at Alzheimer’s Research UK leading a team covering media, science communications, branding, health information, digital development and special projects. Tim joined the charity in 2008 and has overseen communications during a period of growth, including leading the change in brand to Alzheimer’s Research UK in 2011. Before joining the charity, Tim worked in PR and communications roles in both the public and private sectors, covering education, the environment and industry.
Dr Simon RidleyDr Simon Ridley
Simon joined Alzheimer's Research UK in January 2009. As Head of Research he is responsible for the delivery of funding programmes. Simon follows new developments in dementia research and is a regular media spokesperson on research matters. Simon has extensive experience as a researcher and has worked in industry. He studied biochemistry at Trinity College Dublin and obtained his PhD from Cambridge University.
Dr Matthew NortonDr Matthew Norton
Dr Matthew Norton joined Alzheimer's Research UK as Head of Policy and Public Affairs in 2013 and leads on policy development and stakeholder engagement. He has a PhD in Social Policy and experience of supporting the design and running of bio-medical and clinical research for the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). Matthew has also worked as a Senior Policy Advisor at the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit and prior to joining Alzheimer’s Research UK worked in policy and research for Age UK.

Our Blogger Groups