Case Study

Turtle Key Arts

Turtle Key Arts was funded to bring its acclaimed Turtle Song model to Buckinghamshire

 “I seriously feel like I am going to burst with joy trying to think of everything I want to say, I will never ever forget the experience…I only have to look at my Mum’s face when we are with you all to see the love and joy in her…beautiful memories have been made thanks to every single person involved.” – Daughter of participant with dementia

In 2017, Turtle Key Arts brought its acclaimed Turtle Song model to Buckinghamshire, benefitting local elderly people with dementia and connecting them with Waddesdon Manor and its staff.

Working in partnership with English Touring Opera and Royal College of Music, Turtle Song is the flagship programme for Turtle Key Arts whose work is recognised for its ability to break new ground in advancing participation in the arts by disabled, disadvantaged and socially excluded people.

Over the course of 10 sessions musicians from the Royal College of Music worked with 20 elderly participants to write lyrics and compose music for their very own song cycles. These were performed in a final sharing at Waddesdon Manor, attended by participants’ families and Manor staff.

“The regular sessions have given Christina something to look forward to. As a resident of 13 years with limited mobility she has been able to socialise and enjoy her particular interest – music.  It was also wonderful to see her relatives at the final performance to re-establish that relationship.  She has and continues to enjoy telling staff about her time with you and reminiscing about Waddesdon”

Turtle Key Arts delivered a successful programme to improve the lives of those with dementia through high quality arts participation.

The first year of the project has enabled Turtle Key Arts to meet its aim to improve the lives of those with dementia through high quality arts participation and cross generational engagement. As well as forging strong relationships with Waddesdon Manor and its team, the first year has allowed valuable lessons to be learned around local partnership development and supporting those with dementia and their Carers.  These will inform the second year of delivery to ensure the continuing support for elderly people with dementia in Buckinghamshire, strengthening the connection with their neighbour, Waddesdon Manor.