Before the role was filled by a new incumbent, the former Callington portreeve officially opened the first dementia coffee morning at Cornwall Care’s Chyvarhas nursing and residential home on Saltash Road.

Having worked as a carer in the home for eleven years, the event served as a fitting finale to councillor Tolman’s term as outgoing portreeve.

Cllr Tolman said: ‘It was the best job I ever had. I left in 1999 to qualify as a teacher but the staff and residents here were like family. It’s wonderful to come back and I love the refurbishment that has been going on’.

After cutting the ribbon to the area close to reception — which will now be used for the event on the third Friday of every month — Cllr Tolman joined those attending for light refreshments and a heartfelt discussion about the importance of getting together and sharing experiences.

Michael Dickinson-Smith, Chyvarhas Home manager, said: ‘It’s so important for carers to talk to each other in a safe space, especially those trying to look after a loved one at home.

‘Dementia affects everyone differently but supporting someone dear to you, whose personality is being changed by an illness affecting their brain, can be hard to cope with.

‘Carers are all too often forgotten so giving people a chance to meet others in a similar situation can be crucial.’

Those in attendance listened to Michael talk about dementia and its effects in a setting that encouraged them to ask pertinent questions and share stories.

The next dementia coffee morning at Chyvarhas will take place on Friday, July 21 from 10am to 12pm. The event is free and open to all.

Chyvarhas accommodates up to 36 residents and belongs to the Cornwall Care group of care homes now part of not-for-profit Sanctuary Care.