Memory Lane Focus Group

Date: Thursday 15th December 2016

Venue: The Heritage Learning Centre, Museum of Oxford, Oxford Town Hall, St Aldate’s, Oxford, OX1 1BX

Last month Living Well Oxford joined The Museum of Oxford’s Memory Lane group (  This monthly reminiscence group enables people to meet, share memories and reminisce about the old days.  Each session is themed around a different topic, to encourage participants to communicate with each other by sharing stories and memories in a fun and interactive way.  There is also the Memory Lane Movers and Shakers group, which is a gentle dance and music group where sessions are inspired by the memories and themes of Memory Lane.

The mid-December meeting was Memory Lane’s Christmas session, which included a review of the various sessions in 2016, and a Movers and Shakers taster.  It was then time to introduce the Living Well Oxford project and our Ageing: From Birth and Beyond “pop-up shop” which will run in May 2017.  This provided an opportunity for us to find out what this local group of older people think about the project and gather their views to feed into the development of the event.

This session enabled us to focus on the marketing and evaluation of the “pop-up shop”.  Things that would attract the group members to come and visit the “pop-up shop” included:

  • Demonstrations
  • Seeing the research equipment
  • Finding out how to continue to live independently and get help

It was useful to discover where the group find out about local events, and where we should aim our marketing and distribution of posters / flyers.

Our “pop-up shop” is funded by Wellcome, and we need to make sure we evaluate it carefully and appropriately.  The group provided useful insight into how we can effectively gather this feedback data from the “pop-up shop” visitors, and suggested the idea of group feedback opportunities as part of the shop itself.  This is something we hadn’t previously identified.

At the end of the session we asked the group:

What health condition / health and wellbeing issue do you think is society’s greatest concern in an ageing population?


It was interesting that they identified dementia and loneliness as the top two issues.

It was a great pleasure to work with the Memory Lane group, and we would like to extend our thanks to all the members who participated in December’s session with us.  We are looking forward to taking their feedback forward into our planning for the “pop-up shop”.

Our progress with the project will be featured in future blog posts, so keep reading!





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