A GROUP which works to support people with dementia in Keighley is to benefit from a Gannett Foundation grant.

The foundation is the charitable arm of Gannett, the parent company of the Keighley News and Telegraph & Argus papers. Each year the Gannett Foundation runs a campaign to reward hardworking and important charities.

Dementia Friendly Keighley (DFK) was selected by a panel of judges to receive a £2,500 grant, which will be used to purchase a piece of interactive artwork called Lifewall.

DFK spokesman Sandra Kelly said it had been "amazing" to hear that DFK would receive the full amount it had applied for.

She explained that the Lifewall will be made by a Colne-based company called Little Islands, and once complete is likely to comprise a large beach scene with many tactile, interactive elements.

She said: "One of these artworks was brought along to our dementia friendly fete in May last year.

"This includes features such as beach huts, a sun, seagulls, and a lighthouse which all react when touched, meaning it can be used for reminiscence therapy.

"It was fantastic to see this artwork in use at a nursing home in Colne called Belvedere Manor.

"It costs about £3,000 and we'd already raised £1,000 ourselves towards the cost before we got the full grant.

"We can now afford to have our Lifewall commissioned – each one is bespoke – and once it's been made for us it'll go in our office at Brunswick Arcade, in the Airedale Shopping Centre.

"It should be there when we launch our drop-in service from our office, which should hopefully be soon."

Over the last ten years alone, Newsquest Media Group, which includes Keighley News and Telegraph & Argus, has given more than £3 million to help charitable community causes all over the UK, from Scotland and Northern Ireland to London and the West Country.

Trustees had to make difficult choices from a stack of deserving applications, but narrowed the list down to those which they thought would deliver the most worthwhile practical benefits to communities served by Newsquest's local news brands.

Simon Westrop, chairman of the trustees, said: "Year on year, we're seeing better applications with more focused attention on different ways of helping – caring for the present but also building for the future.

“If your application did not succeed this time, please don’t be discouraged, but look at the applications that have won grants and think how you can come up with even better ideas next year.”

The Gannett Foundation UK, which makes the grants, retains a modest reserve to cater for urgent applications until the next round of awards in November 2018. Applications can be made through any local Newsquest Media Group editor.