Former Coronation Street star Suranne Jones has shared a treasured memory in support of a dementia charity.

The Oldhamer joins famous faces such as Jo Brand, Sir Geoff Hurst and Arlene Phillips, in support of the Alzheimer’s Society’s Forget Me Not Appeal.

The appeal, which has raised more than £450,000 so far, calls on the public to donate and wear a Forget Me Not badge to show support for those affected by dementia.

The forget-me-not is a small blue flower that represents remembrance, so the charity asked people to share a memory they would never want to forget.

Suranne Jones is an ambassador of the charity.

Talking in a video, Suranne said: “My heartwarming memory is of me and my mum sat on my bed in our old house, trying to learn lines.

“I was about 11 and there was a knock at the door in the script. My mum kept knocking at my bedroom door and she would come in as the other part.

“Every time she came in, I would burst out laughing because she was rubbish, and she couldn’t do it properly. We laughed and laughed and laughed and never learnt our lines!”

Suranne became an Alzheimer’s Society ambassador in 2020, as her late mother lived with dementia for eight years before she sadly passed away in 2016.

Casting his mind back to England’s World Cup victory in 1966, Sir Geoff Hurst said: “Naturally, my treasured memory is related to the World Cup.

The Oldham Times: Sir Geoff HurstSir Geoff Hurst

“I remember going to the ground in the coach and people had a large banner which read ‘Nobby Stiles for Prime Minister’.

“When we were in the tunnel on the way to the ground, it felt like the whole country was there waiting for us to play. It sent shivers down my spine.”

Sir Geoff continued by reminiscing fondly about the memories he holds of the 90,000 people that watched the highly anticipated match, along with the rest of the country who supported the team, and receiving the trophy when England claimed their victory.

He added: “People around the world, still to this day, remember exactly where they were on that wonderful day on July 30, 1966.”

Memories were also shared by Alzheimer’s Society supporters including Eleanor, seven, who would never want to forget the day she met her little sister, and Dave, who is living with dementia, who spoke of the happiest day of his life marrying his wife June.

Kate Lee, chief executive of Alzheimer’s Society, recalled a special memory where her mum, after a dementia diagnosis, kept bringing cups of tea to her dad, creating a pile-up.

She said: “People with dementia may experience memory loss, among other symptoms, making the forget-me-not the perfect way to represent the condition.

“I loved going back and reminiscing about the special moments in my life as part of our Forget Me Not Appeal. I would be devastated if I lost those memories. Sadly, this is the harsh reality for many of the 30,000 people living with dementia in Greater Manchester today.

“I would encourage everyone to show those affected by dementia that they are not alone by wearing a Forget Me Not pin badge and taking some time to share those treasured memories with loved ones over a cup of tea – or two!”

The appeal has also been supported by the likes of Jo Brand, Dame Arlene Phillips, Dame Judi Dench, Hugh Dennis, Angela Rippon, Sally Lindsay, and John Middleton.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and for most people, the first sign of Alzheimer’s is experiencing problems with their memory.

This could include forgetting recent conversations and events, having difficulties with day-to-day tasks, getting lost or struggling to recognise faces.

How to support someone with dementia

There are practical ways that you can support a person with dementia who is experiencing memory loss.

These include giving prompts such as asking ‘Have you had breakfast today?’, creating a memory box with photos and information about people in their life, or using assistive technology like electronic pill boxes to remind them to take medication.

If you or someone you know is experiencing memory problems that are causing difficulties in day-to-day life, talk to your GP or contact Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Connect support line on 0333 150 3456.