Wednesday 15 May 2024

Exeter Dementia Action Alliance celebrates its tenth anniversary and the work of cartoonist Tony Husband

The cartoonist, Tony Husband, had a successful career as a cartoonist and was mainly known for his work in Private Eye magazine with his work also appearing in The Times, the Daily Mail and the Sunday Express as well as magazines, including Playboy and The Spectator. In later life Tony's father, Ron, suffered from Alzheimer’s and his gradual loss of memory and move into a care home inspired Tony to draw a few illustrations of an imagined conversation between the two of them. The result became 'Take Care, Son The Story of My Dad and His Dementia', which was published when Tony himself was sixty-four in 2014. (link)

The Exeter 'Cosy Route Project' in 2021 was a community wellbeing and dementia awareness initiative created by the Exeter Dementia Action Alliance to signpost people of all abilities to routes on the edge of the city where they can walk and run. Tony was commissioned to illustrate the 'Cosy Routes around Exeter' and in so doing captured the different character of each of the eight routes. (link)

During the pandemic Tony, working with the founder of the Exeter Dementia Action Alliance, Gina Awad, engaged with a number of family carers affected by dementia to create the book he illustrated, ‘United Caring For Our Love Ones Living With Dementia'. It was published in 2022 and was unique in that it featured real-life stories of people with dementia, told by loved ones. The stories reflected issues like : the impact of receiving a diagnosis; the importance of person-centred care and social inclusion; the power of meaningful engagement, partnerships, and peer support. 
The Exeter Dementia Action Alliance is now ten years old and while marking the occasion to mark the occasion the charitable foundation also took time to remember the cartoonist Tony Husband, who had worked closely with EDAA for seven years. He completed what proved to be his last piece of work for the Alliance before dying of a heart attack two weeks later on London's Westminster Bridge. (link)