Reminiscence provides many therapeutic benefits for older people, particularly those living with dementia; it promotes emotional wellbeing, cognitive stimulation and social interaction. The museum offers a range of interactive sessions which are open to all. Playing an active role in the local dementia friendly community, we are dedicated to providing a unique and engaging experience for everyone who attends our friendly groups.


Reminiscence Outreach Sessions

Members of our award-winning team of experienced volunteers visit day centres and care homes to facilitate these sessions.

We aim to stimulate memories, create sensory experiences, and foster meaningful connections through the use of original objects, photographs, ephemera and music from our museum’s collection. Different themes include: ‘It’s a Man’s World’, ‘Childhood’, ‘Wartime’ and ‘Holidays by the Sea’, each session is tailored to suit requirements. Our carefully curated collection of objects will transport participants back in time, triggering memories and sparking conversations. From the strong scent of carbolic soap to the feel of a vintage toy, each item has been selected to evoke a sense of nostalgia and encourage reminiscing.

Testimonial from a Care Home Manager:
“Just a little note to say a ‘Big Thank You’ to you for your visit to us all… Our wonderful ladies and gents truly enjoy all the vintage items that you kindly displayed and spoke about. Also, a massive thank you to how you delivered the session; with compassion and understanding around having cognitive impairments. We’re very much looking forward to your next visit”.

For more information and to book a session, please contact Mary on [email protected].

‘Times Gone By’ Reminiscence Group

Run in partnership with Wimborne Library, this small and friendly reminiscence group meets at the museum on the last Thursday of every month, except August. The session takes place in the Garden Room between 2pm and 3pm and is open to all. Entry is through the Tea Room door, next to Wimborne Library.

Each month, a different topic is chosen, giving everyone the opportunity to chat and share stories, while also enjoying a cuppa together. Often, objects and ephemera are provided to stimulate discussions and discover shared memories and experiences. The session usually ends with a quick fun quiz.

An optional donation of £1.50 per person is suggested. There’s no need to book, but if you would like more information, please email Mary on [email protected].

‘Craft and Chat’ Group

If you love to craft, then this friendly group is for you! Bring along your own project to work on in the company of likeminded people. You’ll make new friends, enjoy a natter and you may even be inspired to try a different craft.

Our Craft and Chat sessions are open to everyone and take place on the third Monday of every month, between 2.30pm and 4pm. There’s no need to book, just pay £1.50 in the Tea Room on the day. A hot drink is included in the price! For more information, please email Sharon at [email protected].

Jolly Days at the Museum

Run by ‘In Jolly Good Company’, , these sessions offer dementia friendly activity get-togethers to bring friendship, joy and a sense of community to older people living in Dorset.

‘Jolly Days at the Museum’ offers people a chance to return to socialising, with opportunities to meet others and try new things in a safe space. Local artists, musicians, creatives and freelancers are invited along to deliver a range of activities for the fun afternoon sessions.

‘Jolly Days at the Museum’ takes place on the first and third Thursdays of the month between 2pm and 4pm. To book a place or to find out more information, you can either email Sarah at [email protected] or call her on 07884 333117, Monday to Friday, 10am – 5pm.

Jolly Days Photography: Brent Jones