A COLCHESTER choir leader has said it is "heart-warming" to see the impact singing has had on the care home residents with dementia with whom he has struck a chord.

Andy Ingram is a professional musician and leader of the Busketeers Choir, which operates in Clacton, Jaywick, Braintree and Bury St Edmunds. 

The Busketeers, founded by Andrew Small and offering evening singing sessions for all, has most recently being working with the Peaceful Place, in Basildon.

The support care centre, which looks after adults with early-onset dementia, called in Andy and his team to help spread joy among the residents it looks after.

Under his guidance, the residents have not only formed their won choir but have also found their collective voice and an increased confidence. 
Clacton and Frinton Gazette:

Andy said: “Singing can be extremely helpful for wellbeing and mental health. 

“We were approached by the Peaceful Place and asked if we could offer some sessions for their patients.

"We went to meet the staff and designed a new programme, especially tailored for their residents. 

“Since it started, I have seen such a great change in people’s confidence, it is just heart-warming to see.” 

Clacton and Frinton Gazette:
Bosses at the Peaceful Place have now praised Andy for his work.

A spokesman said: “In the few months since he started working with us, Andy has demonstrated remarkable dedication and an innate ability to connect with our members, all of whom live with various forms of dementia. 

“What truly sets Andy apart is his passionate response to the progress of our members.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette:

"He takes great pride in his work, and this is evident in the way he engages with both the music and our members. 

“Thank you, Andy, for being a cherished member of our team and for helping our members find confidence and joy through music.” 

The Busketeers’ evening sessions are open to anyone who would like to join.

Their mission is to raise £1 million for charity and have already raised more than £110,000. 

Clacton and Frinton Gazette:

Andy and the Busketeers are now looking to arrange more sessions for those with dementia to enjoy, in the likes of Clacton, for example, where Andy believes the town's elderly population would benefit immensely. 

Andy said: “If anyone would like to come along or book a taster session, you will be not only part of a very welcoming group but a choir with no pressure.”