AN exhibition which brought the past to life for those living with dementia has inspired a new film.

The North East Lost Dialect exhibition at The Word, National Centre for the Written Word, at South Shields explored traditional North East words, phrases and songs– many of which are now rarely used.

And its effect on visitors with various stages of dementia was so profound that The Word has commissioned a film, specially to help residents living with the condition.

Titled, The Place We Love, the film is a collaboration between The Word, writer Tom Kelly and filmmakers Unified Films.

Using images from South Tyneside Libraries archives and new footage, Mr Kelly walks viewers to places and buildings in the area which have been important to him through the years.

The aim is to prompt a memory for those people living with dementia and to encourage carers to ask questions which may bring memories back to life.

Mr Kelly said: “As part of the Lost Dialect exhibition there was an interactive jukebox playing Benny Graham singing local folk songs and I saw how emotional one man got when his mother– who had quite severe dementia– started to sing along.

“That wasn’t a unique reaction, either. This film takes me around South Tyneside, from my birthplace to where I have worked, including my first job at the Mercantile Dry Dock, Jarrow. I walk around the streets and pubs that have stayed in my heart and head.

“And I really feel that if these memories mean something to me, they may well stir memories for carers and those living with dementia, hopefully providing solace and happiness.”

The film will be accompanied by a quiz of lost dialect words and local songs and contain advice from Alzheimer’s Society, which worked on the project to ensure it will have the desired impact for people living with dementia and to signpost where people living with dementia and their carers can access support.

It will be shown in the current Word Bank of Lost Dialects exhibition at The Word from next Tuesday, November 12 until January, 5, 2020. It can also be downloaded for free at and YouTube or bought on DVD at the venue.