Picture: Paul Tibbs.

People with dementia and their carers can enjoy an afternoon at the opera for free thanks to an initiative by the West Norfolk Gilbert and Sullivan Society.

The opera society is offering 24 tickets to its performance of Pirates of Penzance in January to those attending Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Cafes in the area.

The offer is part of a charity twinning project which gives businesses the opportunity to sponsor a performance and fund free tickets.

On this occasion, the sponsor was The Mortgage Bureau, which has an office in King’s Lynn.

Amanda Arterton, who arranges the Charity Twinning project for the society, said:  “This was an ideal opportunity to get even more involved with this charity and to offer 24 complimentary tickets to people living with dementia and their carers to attend the matinee performance in January.”

As well as being able to offer free tickets to its service users, the Alzheimer’s Society will also have the opportunity to hold a collection at the end of the performance, enabling it to raise valuable funds for the charity.

Tori Ablard, Alzheimer’s Society community fundraiser, added: “People with dementia often retain memories of songs and melodies for longer than other memories.

“This means that the opera can provide a fantastic opportunity for a day out. Initiatives such as this one are also a brilliant example of how businesses and organisations can work together to help improve the lives of people with dementia and can support people to enjoy hobbies and activities for longer.’

Anne Biggar, service manager for the Alzheimer’s Society in Norfolk, said: “This is such a lovely idea from The Gilbert and Sullivan Society.

“It is being advertised at all of our Dementia Cafes across West Norfolk, and also to people living with dementia and their carers who cannot make the cafés but who we visit at home.

“We realise that there will be many who want to obtain a ticket, so all the names will be put into a hat and winners of the free tickets will be drawn at the King’s Lynn Café on December 5.”

The Pirates of Penzance is performed at King’s Lynn Arts Centre from January 28 to January 31.Tickets cost £13.50 for adults (£12 concessions) £6 for children.

Call the box office on 01553 764864 to book.