AN East Lancashire law firm has spent 18 months transforming one of its Accrington offices into a dementia-friendly environment to help its clients.

Woodcocks Haworth and Nuttall Solicitors has refurbished its Accrington base to meet the standards recommended by the Alzheimer’s Society.

The design incorporates distinctive paint colours to identify key features such as doors, woodwork and handrails.

Plain carpets and fabrics were chosen combined with furniture designed for comfort and accessibility.

Finishing touches include ambient lighting and non-glare blinds with new clear signage throughout the building for easy navigation.

The project was supervised by the firm’s private client department solicitor, Patrick Swanney, who is a member of Blackburn with Darwen, Hyndburn and Burnley Dementia Action Alliance, a Dementia Friends Champion, and a volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Society.

He said: “This is a cause very close to my heart as my aunt was diagnosed with dementia five years ago.

"As a firm with a long track record of helping clients with dementia, it was important we made this investment. Arranging legal matters can be quite daunting for anyone, but for those with dementia it can be particularly challenging."

Michael Shroot, WHN's chief executive, said: "We’ve trained all our staff at the Accrington, Blackburn and Bury offices, with plans to roll out the training to our remaining offices very soon.”

The firm also has offices in Bacup, Haslingden, Great Harwood and Rawtenstall.