All-Party Parliamentary Group appoints expert panel for inquiry into dementia-friendly housing

3 June 2020

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) focussed on Housing and Care for Older People has appointed an expert panel of specialists, to support its Inquiry into the provision of housing for those older people living with dementia.

Co-chaired by Peter Aldous MP and Lord Richard Best, the APPG will be working with leaders from across local government, later living and academia, to consider how housing policy could better reflect the needs of people living with dementia.

Around 850,000 people are currently living with dementia in the UK, with the figure expected to rise to 1.6 million by 2040. Two thirds are currently living in their own accommodation, rather than tailored residential care. The Inquiry will consider policies and practices that might enhance independence and quality of life among this group.

The Inquiry’s panel will benefit from the insight of leaders in the provision of later living; including Jane Ashcroft CBE, Chief Executive of Inquiry sponsors Anchor Hanover; Bruce Moore, Chief Executive of Housing 21; and Damian Utton, Director at Pozzoni Architecture.

Pozzoni has been designing award-winning later living environments across the country for more than 30 years; spanning care homes, extra care and retirement villages. They are active members of the Housing Learning and Improvement Network (LIN), the National Care Forum and the Housing and Dementia Research Consortium.

Director Damian Utton brings a wealth of relevant experience to the APPG panel, having contributed to several publications on dementia-friendly design, including the ‘Dementia Friendly Housing Charter’.

Damian commented: “Dementia-friendly design, and in particular the design of housing, can have a positive effect on anyone’s health and wellbeing - not just people living with dementia. We all benefit from a built environment that is easy to understand and navigate.

“To ensure this country can provide the best environments for people living with dementia, we need to fully appreciate the current challenges. We would urge anyone with experience or insight on dementia to help bolster our understanding by feeding into this Inquiry.”

The Inquiry will be inviting and hearing evidence over the coming months, before making its recommendations to Government early next year. The Inquiry is now calling on later living policy makers, providers, developers and designers to offer their insight and help establish:

  • the links between housing, health and social care
  • best practice in the design of new homes
  • ways to increase supply of specialist dementia-friendly properties;
  • changes and adaptations to existing properties to enable people to live well with dementia at home; and
  • the role innovative technology could play in improving the delivery of care and support.

Written submissions are also being welcomed to inform the final report. Housing LIN, Secretariat to this APPG inquiry, is requesting written submissions no later than Tuesday, 30 June 2020, headed ‘APPG Inquiry’ and sent to: