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Spurs' Mabbutt helps revive sporting memories

11 Sep 2019
Gary Mabbutt

Club ambassador joins in with workshop that encourages people with dementia to remember times when they watched or played football

Former Tottenham Hotspur captain Gary Mabbutt is well aware from personal experience how difficult it can be for those with dementia to keep their memories alive, and he knows football can help.

"My parents were both diagnosed with dementia," he said. "The club does so much work with youngsters, but people are getting older and it’s our responsibility to help them too."

The club ambassador was keen to help out with a Sporting Memories workshop and so visited Percy House, the home of Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, the charitable arm of the north London club.

Mabbutt joined in with activities designed to help elderly people who suffer from dementia in the London borough of Haringey recall times when they watched or played football.

He and the participants looked through memorabilia from Spurs' archive, while staff from the foundation also facilitated football-themed games.

"Sport is so important to so many people and can trigger all sorts of memories," he added. "It can bring the generations together.”

Mabbutt's Sporting Memories visit

Gareth Jones, equality and inclusion manager at Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, explained how the workshops can help.

"Sometimes [a memory] develops and becomes a story of something that someone can remember, which leads on to the next part of a story," he said.

"Before you know it, it’s a whole day they can remember of being at Tottenham Hotspur in the 1960s or 70s."

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