Keith Oliver

Keith Oliver lives near to Canterbury with his wife Rosemary. Keith’s world changed when he was diagnosed with early-onset dementia, also known as Alzheimer’s, at the age of 55.

He has enjoyed a 33-year career in teaching with his final teaching post as head teacher of Blean Primary School.

Keith has a very positive attitude towards dementia, an attitude he says he’s always had towards life, and something that helps him deal with it day-to-day. He is actively involved in helping others to cope with early-onset dementia and works to promote recognition of the symptoms.

He has also been actively working as a Dementia Envoy for the trust and has carried out some exceptional work. In 2014, alongside seven other writers and with the help of university students and the Alzheimer’s Society, he published 'Welcome to our world'.

Engagement

Talks

Royal College of Psychiatrists' event on Dementia Care Evidence Based Treatment Pathway:

  • Dementia Care Evidence Based Treatment Pathway Talk

Interviews

Keith is a representative of people with dementia for the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Arts, Health and Wellbeing as part of an inquiry into mental health issues. You can watch an interview between Keith Oliver and Lord Howarth, the co-chair of the enquiry.

Interview with homecare.co.uk

Keith talks to homecare.co.uk about how his life was turned upside down when doctors confirmed 'the unknown'. Read the full article.

BBC Radio 4 interviews

  • January 2017 - Keith Oliver talks about how he has written a book about his experience of dementia
  • October 2015 - Dementia Tsar, Alistair Burns, discusses finding a dementia cure in the next 10 years
  • July 2015 - Keith talks about his experience with the disease
  • August 2014 - Keith Oliver and Chris Norris talk about the 'Welcome to our World' book
  • June 2014 - Listen to Keith's involvement in a discussion with the Prime Minister about finding a cure for dementia

BBC Radio Kent interview

  • February 2017 - Keith Oliver and Tom Coppins, from the Memorybilia group, talk to BBC Radio Kent Breakfast about living with dementia (at one hour 8 minutes in to the programme).

Student BMJ Interview - What matters to me: living with Alzheimer's disease

Keith shares his experiences as a patient living with Alzheimer's disease. Read the article on the Student BMJ website

Publications

'Walk The Walk, Talk The Talk' by Keith Oliver
Walk the Walk, Talk the Talk is the story of Keith’s life before, during and since receiving his diagnosis, told not just by Keith, but by the health professionals, friends and family who know him best, and including a selection of the talks he has given to a wide variety of audiences since his diagnosis. This is a story of hope and encouragement that is both moving and inspiring.

'Welcome to our World'
In 2014, some of the Forget-Me-Nots were taught life writing skills by a local author which resulted in the publication of a unique book called 'Welcome to Our World'. The book challenges the stereotypical views about living with dementia. It’s thought to be the first time that a group, whose members are all experiencing symptoms of dementia, has come together to tell their stories, record their memories and publish them in a book. The group is delighted to have the book endorsed with a passionate foreword written by Jo Brand, who worked with dementia patients in Kent in her younger years.

Suffering with dementia: the other side of “living well’’
Download the following guest editorial piece written with involvement from Keith Oliver, from International Psychogeriatrics (2017). The piece is published on the Cambridge University website:

Suffering with dementia: the other side of “living well’’

Videos

Keith Oliver's story

Dementia: A month in the life of