Going missing


Registered User
Jul 15, 2003
Southampton, UK
I am the secretary of Hampshire Search and Rescue. We are a registered charity and were set up specifically to assist Hampshire Police to search for vulnerable missing persons. We also can be called upon to help other similar units from other areas anywhere in Britain.

As you can appreciate, quite a few of our calls are to search for Alzheimers sufferers who have become confused and wandered. The reason for my posting is that, as part of our continuous training, I am trying to arrange for a speaker to give us a short talk on typical behaviour exhibited by sufferers. Hopefully we will be able to use this information to better "predict" where they may be found, which is vital to reduce the time taken to find the missing person. It would also be useful in knowing how best to speak to the person etc. as some of our members will have had no experience of Alzheimers.

If anyone could point me in the direction of someone who could help us I would be very grateful.


Registered User
Apr 28, 2003
Search & Rescue

Hello Maragaret - you might like to get in contact with the Portsmouth branch of the Alzheimer's Society. I understand that local branches can sometimes arrange for speakers or training:
Portsmouth and District
2nd Floor
Fratton Community Centre
Trafalgar Place
Telephone 023 9273 0088 (office)
Care line 023 9273 0123
Fax 023 9273 0130
Email portsmouth@alzheimers.freeserve.co.uk
Website http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/Portsmouth

Happy searching and rescuing!

Clive Evers

Registered User
May 9, 2003
Margaret - I would advise you to contact our Southern Regional Office and speak to eg. Ruth Berry or Sandra Oliver who should be able to advise you on a local speaker. Tel 01372 454841.

In particular I would advise that you try to get an old age psychiatrist to come and talk to your charity as they will be the key consultant with most knowledge and experience of people with dementia. My colleagues in the regional office are likely to be able to suggest a 'friendly' old age psychiatrist.

You should also know that usually people with dementia who do go missing do 'return' safely within 24 hours - that seems to be the general experience. Of course it is extremely worrying when it happens.

I would also suggest that you contact the National Missing Person's Helpline for their experience and suggestions.

Finally I would encourage you to look at the range of information we have on our website in relation to communicating with people with dementia - see our list of information sheets and advice sheets.

And do contact our Helpline if you require any further information.