SCOTT Mitchell – husband of the late Dame Barbara Windsor – has been appointed an Alzheimer’s Research UK Ambassador.
Scott said he was ‘honoured’ to accept the role and to be able to continue his wife’s legacy alongside the UK’s leading dementia research charity.
As an Ambassador, Scott will help raise awareness of dementia and funds for research while encouraging others to support the search for breakthrough dementia treatments.
On Sunday, Scott will run the Vitality Big Half for Alzheimer’s Research UK, followed by the Virgin Money London Marathon on 3 October. Scott first ran the iconic 26.2-mile course two years ago to raise funds for Dementia Revolution – a record-breaking campaign from Alzheimer’s Research UK and Alzheimer’s Society, as charity of the year for the 2019 event.
Dame Barbara, who would have celebrated her 84th birthday on 6 August, received global praise when she went public with her dementia diagnosis in 2018, helping to raise awareness of a condition that affects 850,000 people across the UK today.
Following her death in December last year, a condolences page set up by Scott was inundated with tributes and donations to Alzheimer’s Research UK. To date, over £160,000 has been donated to the charity in her memory.
Scott has publicly campaigned for more dementia research funding, backing Alzheimer’s Research UK’s calls on the government to double their annual investment into the search for a cure – an unfulfilled promise as part of their 2019 election manifesto. He has also worked behind the scenes, sharing his and Dame Barbara’s story in the hope of securing future support for the charity.
Scott said of his appointment:
“I am honoured to have been asked to become an Ambassador for Alzheimer’s Research UK. Barbara’s courageous decision to go public with her diagnosis three years ago had such a profoundly positive impact on others going through their own dementia journey.
“Barbara felt like a friend to everyone even if they’d never met her, so to have someone like her being so open about her diagnosis made others feel comfortable to do the same. That’s an incredible legacy and one I’ll continue in her memory with immense pride. She would’ve absolutely loved to know she’s continuing to make a difference and helping other people in this way.
“I’m glad I can play a small part in helping to one day find a cure for this devastating disease. Alzheimer’s Research UK is a vitally important organisation, and they’re our best hope of ensuring future generations don’t have to go through the same heartbreak I did. I’ll do my best to ensure we reach that day sooner.”
Hilary Evans, Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“We are so proud to have Scott join us as an Alzheimer’s Research UK Ambassador. His passionate support of our work has been outstanding, and his appointment underlines just what that means to us all at the charity.
“We are touched by his decision to continue supporting dementia research in Dame Barbara’s memory and, together, we’ll ensure her legacy lives on, and that research continues to change the lives of those affected by this devastating condition.”
Anyone wanting to donate towards Scott’s running challenges can contribute to Dame Barbara’s condolences JustGiving page.