• Golden Threads 15 August 2016 | View comments

  • 15th August 2016 | By David Jolley

    ‘Golden’ is Black Country for anything which is wonderful, as in ‘He was Golden’ – from a widow remembering a much loved husband.

    Friday took us to Warburton Street in Didsbury – tucked away and still with its cobbles, but much tidier and to a degree more limited than it was in the 1970s. Then Eric Morten was still publishing his books on local history. The book shop no longer straggles the two sides of the street and the pavement display of second hand books is constrained to one table instead four of five. But it is still a special place and Number 4 is just right for lunch with special friends from the 1970s.

    B is now a Dame and D a retired Professor – both still active in responsible roles, as are their spouses. It is just good to know that these lovely honest human beings are still so much themselves – as are we, we trust – interests in families, other friends, the health of the locality as well as the nation.

    Is that why I am digging this morning? – ridding beds, which might be home to flowers, cut into the grassed area which is the Manchester Road Corner across from The George and Dragon and The Wheatsheaf, of the weeds which have taken hold following a tentative bid to plant them by another voluntary group who have found the task beyond them.

    These challenges and our responses to them are what defines us, what defined us in the 1970s and still runs true. Defined Rob Jones who worked with B before both came to spend time with us – marvellous fusion of spirits in causes which have remained related if not identical.

    The key has to be to put your hands on, risk getting them dirty, and use the received wisdom and restrictive rules of the time with a pinch of salt. That is how I see our Dementia Conversations initiative, and that’s the point of the spade in my hand this morning.

    A lady stopped to say thank you. ‘I am retiring next week. I shall come and join you’. A taxi driver drew up and came over. He had words of advice and pointed us to a similar initiative he’s seen in another part of the town.

    It is catching .....

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