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The most dementia-friendly places in the UK [Study]

From memory loss to difficulty with daily tasks, dementia impacts thousands of people across the UK. Dementia refers to the large number of progressive conditions that affect the brain. With dementia research developing all the time, we are becoming increasingly familiar with these groups of neurological diseases and their impact on a person.

Data taken from Census Day in 2021 tells us that in 2021 one in six people (16.67%) aged 65 years and over were diagnosed with a form of dementia in the UK alone.

An increasing number of towns and cities across the country are actively making changes to become more ‘dementia-friendly’. Dementia-friendly groups, services and activities provide the perfect kind of support for elderly people living with dementia, enabling senior citizens to maintain their independence and feel connected to their community.

In the run-up to Dementia Action Week 2023, The Live in Care Company decided to take a closer look at the kind of support available for people living with dementia in the UK.

The Live in Care Company has researched every county in the UK, taking into account factors such as:

  • The number of dementia charities
  • Local dementia care services
  • Dementia activities and support groups
  • Dementia-friendly cafes and transport schemes
  • Stand-out dementia-specific initiatives in the local area

After collating this data, The Live in Care Company has ranked the top 20 most dementia-friendly places in the UK.

Top 20 most dementia-friendly counties: UK-wide


The most dementia-friendly location in the UK: Peeblesshire, Scotland!

Peeblesshire in Scotland tops the list for dementia-friendly services in the UK when adjusted for population. This small county located on the Scottish borders may only have a population of around 9000, (as of recent census data), but has more dementia-specific amenities than some of the UK’s largest cities!

Peeblesshire is home to three charities specialising in providing dementia support, operating independently to offer their help, advice and services to the local community. This Scottish county is robustly set up to help residents get around, with a choice of three transport schemes, enabling those living with dementia to stay connected to loved ones and the wider community.

Peeblesshire offers a vast range of activities in addition to its dementia-specific activities, from fishing, golf courses and horse-riding experiences, you can find it all in Peeblesshire.

Peebleshire is also home to two dementia-friendly cafes, the perfect place for those living with dementia to relax and enjoy a cup of tea and cake in an inclusive, welcoming space.

When adjusted for population, counties in Scotland make up eight spots in our UK-wide ranking of the top 20 dementia-friendly places to live.

Top 20 most dementia-friendly counties in England


The most dementia-friendly county in England: Rutland

Located in the East Midlands, Rutland is England’s smallest historic county but has a competitive amount of dementia support available to its residents considering. Rutland is closely followed by the Isle of Wight, Herefordshire, Bristol and Northumberland all taking a spot in the top 5 for the most dementia-friendly places to live in England.

Top 20 most dementia-friendly counties in Scotland


Peebleshire, Kinross-shire and Selkirkshire collectively list for the most dementia-friendly locations to live in Scotland. All three locations provide residents with a range of dementia-friendly transport schemes, cafes and charities to support and cater to the needs of those living with dementia.

Top 20 most dementia-friendly counties in Wales


The most dementia-friendly location in Wales: Torfaen

Torfaen, Wales came out on top, with 11 independent dementia-inclusive activities available in this Welsh county! Some of the activities on offer in Torfaen include lunch clubs, sewing groups and walking clubs, as well as a dementia-specific friendship group. Torfaen is also home to Wales’ first dementia-friendly library service. Following closely behind in second and third place are Pembrokeshire and Blaenau Gwent, both of which offer an impressive selection of dementia-friendly activities, with local, accessible support in place for those living with dementia in the area.

The most dementia-friendly counties in Northern Ireland


Antrim takes the top spot as the most dementia-friendly place to live in Northern Ireland, with one of the highest numbers of dementia care services in the whole of the United Kingdom based on population. Fermanagh and Londonderry follow close behind, with a range of dementia-friendly amenities and services. We analysed the six counties in Northern Ireland to identify the top NI counties for dementia-friendly amenities and services.

The Live in Care Company is a UK-wide provider of tailored live in care services, including live-in dementia care. Co-founder of The Live In Care Company Luca Rado shares his thoughts on the study below.

It’s been fascinating to learn more about areas up and down the country and learning more about the dementia-friendly services available. As a company that works closely with clients living with dementia, this gives us great insight into how our local care teams can utilise these local services. As research into dementia-related conditions increases, so does the wider understanding of the impact this group of diseases can have on individuals and their loved ones. It’s great to see some of the steps that have been taken to improve the support available at a local community level.


To determine the most dementia-friendly locations in the UK, we pulled the following information for every county in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland:

  • Number of dementia charities per county
  • Number of dementia care services
  • Number of dementia activities on offer in the area
  • Number of dementia-specific cafes in the area
  • Number of dementia-friendly transport schemes available in the local area
  • Any dementia-related initiatives in the area that wouldn’t fall under the above categories

We also emailed every council in the UK to ensure we had accounted for any offline dementia-related amenities in the area. We then factored in the population of each county by finding the most up-to-date population figures from the latest ONS and NISRA 2021 censuses so that the number of dementia-related amenities in the area was fairly represented considering the size and population of the county.

We then ranked every county based on the factors above to reveal the top 20 best locations in the UK as a whole and then exclusively for each country.

Data sources:


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