Hampshire Cultural Trust

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Our room settings, and the areas representing mid last century, are of great interest to older people and provide a wonderful stimulus for reminiscence work. These spacious rooms are arranged into different areas of interest, such as 'the kitchen', 'the tea table', 'the wardrobe' and 'the old corner shop'.

Groups of older people can browse around the areas and join in with activities devised to promote good communication, self-esteem building, skills development and, above all, enjoyment. They also have the opportunity to contribute their valuable memories to our historical record.

We are particularly keen to work with organised groups who are interested in making reminiscence work part of an on-going programme of adult education. SEARCH is accessible to disabled visitors and we try to be as flexible as possible, tailoring both the practicalities and the content of your visit to the needs of the older people. We have a refreshment area and your visit can include an informal chat over tea and biscuits! Reminiscence sessions can last up to two hours.

If your group includes mentally or physically frail older people, then we would rely on you to bring an adequate number of your own staff or helpers. In addition to the specially trained 'interpreter/demonstrator', SEARCH can normally provide one other member of staff. All sessions at SEARCH are piloted through trial sessions and there is an on-going process of evaluation and improvement.

Reminiscence sessions can also be offered as an outreach service, with staff bringing the collections to the day centre or residential setting. The price is the same as advertised, plus travel costs


Booking your Reminiscence Session

Sessions must be booked in advance
tel 023 9250 1957.

You will be sent a booking form confirming details. You must sign and return this form to confirm your booking. Sessions last up to two hours in the morning or the afternoon of week days. Start and finish times flexible to fit in with the needs of the older people.

Pre-visit meeting

The leader(s) of the group are advised to come to SEARCH for a pre-visit meeting to see and try out the reminiscence activities and to discuss with staff how the session can be individually tailored for the clients. They will be given written materials to share with other helpers accompanying the group, and will go over all the practical arrangements.


Facilities in the SEARCH building

  • A refreshment area is available as part of your visit
  • SEARCH will provide tea, coffee, cold drinks and biscuits
  • There are toilet facilities, including an accessible toilet
  • There is a lift and all public areas are accessible to visitors with disabilities
  • SEARCH staff have basic First Aid training
  • There is usually parking space for drop-off/pick-up and 3 hour parking spaces across the road
  • There are disabled parking spaces just outside the SEARCH building


Session charges

SEARCH makes a charge to cover the cost of the 'interpreter demonstrator' for your visit. All staff are specially trained to lead sessions using the equipment and collections.

£60 per group for a hour and a half session.

All visits must be pre-booked and payment made at least two weeks prior to the visit. Cancellations at short notice or after the pre-visit meeting will incur an administration fee.