• Simon O'Donovan

What's in a name?

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet."

'Romeo And Juliet', William Shakespeare 1597

Before we kick off with this week’s CST activities page, I just wanted to add a note of caution regarding some of the contents and the need to know a little about the biographies, including losses, of those taking part. An updated ‘Getting To Know Me: Personal Information Communication Form’ has been uploaded to the ‘Person Centred Assessment’ page of this website. THEME The theme for this week’s Cognitive Stimulation Therapy session was 'What’s In A Name?’ We particularly focused on names this week, as Prince Harry and Meghan’s first baby, who is seventh in line to the throne, had recently been named Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor. NEWS ROUND UP The ‘Eurovision Song Contest’ had taken place last week. We listened to the Netherlands winning song ‘Arcade’, performed by Duncan Laurence and announced our sweepstake winner. We discussed the mistake made at the Manchester Hawksmoor Restaurant, where a customer had been served a bottle of red wine valued at £4,500 in error. Apparently the Manager had said it was a mistake that could have happened to anyone and kindly overlooked the error made by his waitress. Let’s hope the customer enjoyed the wine and noticed the difference! Next we looked at a photograph of the Costa Rican tree frog which had been found in bag of bananas, purchased at Nottingham Lidl. We all agreed we would need to look more closely before peeling our next banana! The European Elections were taking place on the day of our session, to elect MEPs to sit in the EU Parliament in The Hague in Brussels. We didn’t get into who voted for which party and who was for or against Brexit, but we did look at a photo of Nigel Farrage getting ‘milkshaked’. We all agreed that respectful debate was by far the preferred approach that should be taken in politics and that things had got a little too heated recently. Next, we look at a photograph of HM Queen Elizabeth visiting a replica Sainsbury’s Store in Covent Garden, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the first Sainsbury’s Grocery Store. Linked to this Sainsbury’s story, we were pleased to note that Morrison’s had announced that they were introducing plastic free fruit and vegetables aisles in 60 of their stores. Also that the Government had announced that from April 2020, sales of plastic straws, cotton buds and drinks stirrers are to be banned in the UK. Next, we discussed Jordan Adelaide Rogers, called the “Skint Care Worker” by the tabloid press, who had inherited a £50m estate after proving though taking a DNA blood test that Charles Rogers, the late Lord Of The Manor of the Penrose Estate in Cornwall, was in fact his father. We paid tribute to Niki Lauda, three times Formula One Champion, who had died this week aged just 70. He had not recovered after needing a lung transplant last year, due to his earlier accident. Next, we noted that May is ‘National Walking Month’ and discussed the benefits of walking, both in respect of physical and mental health. Members shared their favourite walk. We also identified a photograph of Derek Brockway, a.k.a. ‘Derek The Weatherman’, and asked if anyone had watched his recent series of Welsh coastal walks. In local news, we had heard that a huge zip wire was being planned across Cardiff Bay this summer. It will run from the top of St David's Hotel to the Norwegian Church, across the waters of Cardiff Bay and open on 9th July. We asked members who fancied having a go on this daredevil, white knuckle ride. Finally, we looked at a photograph of Andy Murray receiving his Knighthood this week, with Prince Charles undertaking the investiture. This led us into a visual recognition and naming round of ... PICTURE ROUND ‘Name The Dames And Knights Of The British Empire’. Click on the image below to link to the photos we printed off for the tables.

HELEN MIRREN - Age 73 - Actress and star of TV crime series ‘Prime Suspect’ and movies including ‘The Calendar Girls’ and ‘The Queen’. SHIRLEY BASSEY - Age 82 - Otherwise known as ‘The Girl From Tiger Bay’. Diva best known for hit songs including ‘Diamonds Are Forever’, ‘Goldfinger’, ‘Big Spender’ and ‘I Am Who I Am’. LENNY HENRY - Age 60 - Best known for his stand up comedy and charity work with ‘Comic Relief’. Previously married to Dawn French. MAGGIE SMITH - Age 84 - Actress best known recently for ‘Downton Abbey’, but also classic movies such as ‘The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie’ and ‘The Lady In The Yellow Van’. KEN DODD - Died 2018, age 90 - Best remembered for his stand up comedy, his ‘Tickling Stick’ and ‘The Diddy Men From Notty Ash’. He had a number 1 single with ‘Tears’ in 1965. JUDI DENCH - Age 84 - Stage and screen actress. Best known for recent roles in James Bond ‘Skyfall’ and ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’. Also starred in hit TV sitcom ‘As Time Goes By’, with her late husband Michael Williams. VERA LYNN - Age 102 - Known as ‘The Forces Sweetheart’, a best selling singer with songs including ‘We’ll Meet Again’ and ‘White Cliffs Of Dover’. Long term supporter of Armed Forces charities. TERRY WOGAN - Died 2016 Age 77 - Much loved TV and radio presenter. Probably most famous for hosting ‘Blankety Blank’ and commentating on ‘The Eurovision Sing Contest’. Also had a long running chat show, ‘Wogan’ and a surprise hit single (reached number 28 in the UK charts in 1978) with ‘The Floral Dance’. SEAN CONNERY - Age 88 - Scottish actor best known for his role as James Bond in the movies 'Dr. No' (1962), 'From Russia with Love' (1963), 'Goldfinger' (1964), 'Thunderball' (1965), 'You Only Live Twice' (1967), 'Diamonds Are Forever' (1971) and 'Never Say Never Again' (1983). KELLY HOLMES - Age 49 - Retired British middle distance athlete. Holmes specialised in the 800 metres and 1500 metres events and won a gold medal for both distances at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens. DARCEY BUSSELL - Age 50 - Retired ballerina and a former judge on the BBC television dance contest 'Strictly Come Dancing'. TANNI GREY-THOMPSON - Age 49 - One of Britain's greatest Paralympic athletes, Tanni, amassed a remarkable medal haul over 16 years and five Paralympic Games of 11 gold, 4 silver and a bronze. BRUCE FORSYTH - Died 2017, age 89 - British presenter, actor, comedian, singer, dancer, and screenwriter whose career spanned more than 70 years. In 2012, Guinness World Records recognised Forsyth as having the longest television career for a male entertainer. His shows included 'The Price Is Right', 'Play Your Cards Right', 'The Generation Game' and 'Strictly Come Dancing'. PAUL MCCARTNEY - Age 76 - English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer. He gained worldwide fame as the bass guitarist and singer for the Beatles, widely considered the most popular and influential group in the history of popular music. ELTON JOHN - Age 72 - English singer, songwriter, pianist, and composer. He has worked with lyricist Bernie Taupin as his songwriting partner since 1967; they have collaborated on more than 30 albums. The film 'Rocketman', about his life history, has recently launched in UK cinemas. (Real name Reg Dwight.) TOM JONES - Age 78 - Welsh singer whose career has spanned six decades, from his emergence as a vocalist in the mid-1960s with a string of top hits, regular touring, appearances in Las Vegas, and career comebacks—to coaching on 'The Voice UK' from 2012. (Real name Thomas John Woodward.) BARBARA WINDSOR - Age 81 - Best known for her appearances in the 'Carry On' films and for playing Peggy Mitchell in the BBC One soap opera 'EastEnders'. She joined the cast of 'EastEnders' in 1994 and won the 1999 British Soap Award for Best Actress, before finally leaving the show in 2016. Famous currently for championing the Alzheimer's Society. BILLY CONNOLLY - Age 76 - Scottish stand-up comedian, musician, presenter, actor and artist. He is sometimes known, especially in his homeland, by the Scots nickname "The Big Yin". Famous currently for championing the Parkinson's UK. IAN MCKELLEN - Age 80 - English actor whose career spans genres ranging from Shakespearean and modern theatre to popular fantasy and science fiction. Starred as Gandalph in 'The Lord Of The Rings' trilogy. Celebrated gay rights advocate. MICK JAGGER - Age 75 - English singer, songwriter, actor, and film producer who gained worldwide fame as the lead singer and one of the founder members of the Rolling Stones. IDIOMS

Next, we asked members to complete the following phrases ... Be one of the LADS Old BOY / GIRL Big girl's BLOUSE Boy next DOOR Blue eyed BOY Couldn't happen to a nicer PERSON Cover GIRL Man FRIDAY Little boys/girls ROOM There's a good BOY Boy am I glad to SEE YOU Mummy's BOY All work and no play makes Jack a DULL BOY Boy oh BOY Boys will be BOYS Sort out the men FROM THE BOYS Old boy NETWORK Girls just wanna HAVE FUN Adams APPLE Any Tom Dick OR HARRY Davey Jones LOCKER Even STEVENS For Pete's SAKE Simon SAYS Happy as LARRY Great SCOTT Hobson's CHOICE Jack of all TRADES Jack the LAD OR RIPPER Jekyll and HYDE Pandora's BOX Peeping TOM Smart ALEC Take the MICKEY Uncle SAM Bundle of JOY

Uncle Tom Cobley and ALL


We started by asking people if they liked their names? Did anyone have a preferred name or nickname?

We looked up the meaning of Christian names of those in the group on Google. (Simon means 'snub nosed'!)

We asked where people were born? We asked who had an accent, from where they were born and grew up.

We asked if anyone had a second language and asked for a few examples from those who did.

We asked about members heritage and ancestors. Did anyone have anyone or anything of interest in their family tree? This included if anyone had any 'blue blood' in their line, or if there were any 'skeletons in the closet' from times gone by.

We asked members how they would go about finding out about their family tree. Had anyone delved deep into their past?

Ideas for starting off on the journey of completing a family tree included ...

- Asking older relatives for information and interesting facts

- Downloading and searching there

- Looking at old family photograph albums

- Searching online for births, marriages and deaths

- Searching through census records

- Visiting graveyards

Next we asked the following questions ... (with great care ...)


Which bird is said to bring the baby? STORK

What colour clothing is associated with a boy or a girl? BLUE & PINK

What if the gender is not yet known? YELLOW How are babies given their name? AT A CHRISTENING OR NAMING CEREMONY Where is the water poured on the baby's head at a Christening? FONT

Who stands alongside the parents? GODPARENTS

None of us can remember being Christened, or born (thank goodness!), but what are members' very first childhood memories?

Alternatively, for female members what was giving birth like?

What was it like for the fathers?


What is a person's surname called if they no longer use it after marriage? MAIDEN NAME

How is the maiden name referred to on formal documents? NEE

What pulse or grain is thrown at a wedding? RICE

What else ca be thrown, which is more colourful? CONFETTI

What colour does the bride traditionally wear? WHITE

What does she carry down the isle? BRIDAL BOUQUET

Who accompanies the bride down the isle? FATHER OF THE BRIDE

What is said to happen to the person who catches the bouquet when thrown by the bride? THEY WILL BE NEXT TO MARRY

Where would you go for a 'Quickie Wedding'? GRETNA GREEN

What is a 'Shotgun Wedding'? THE BRIDE TO BE IS PREGNANT

Can anyone remember their first dance?

What about their honeymoon?

Did any female members keep their maiden name, or choose for their name to be hyphenated with their husband's?


Where would you formally record a birth, marriage or death? REGISTRY OFFICE

What document formally states a person's wishes in respect of their property and assets? WILL

Has anyone been left anything in a Will?



What is a person called if they are found unconscious and admitted to hospital without identification? JANE OR JOHN DOE

If you wanted to change your name which service would you go to? DEED POLL

What legal document do we need to travel overseas? PASSPORT

What about to drive? DRIVING LICENCE


How do we formally agree or receive something? WE SIGN FOR IT


Who hosted the 1970's family quiz show 'Ask The Family'? ROBERT ROBINSON

Who hosts the current TV series about reconnecting with blood relatives 'Long Lost Family'? DAVINA MCCALL & NICKY CAMPBELL

Which 1994 film starring Hugh Grant and Andie McDowell was about marriages and a death? FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL

Which 1987 film starring Tom Selleck, Ted Danson and Steve Guttenburg was about looking after a newborn? THREE MEN AND A BABY

Which 1991 film starring Steve Martin and Diane Keaton was about arranging a wedding? FATHER OF THE BRIDE

Which 1964 film starring Julie Andrews was about the arrival of a new nanny with fanastical powers? MARY POPPINS

Which 1965 film also starring Julie Andrews was about the arrival of a new governess with musical skills? SOUND OF MUSIC

MOST POPULAR NAMES What about the top 20 boys and girls names now, compared to 1950?

Ask members to guess at them ... Why do people think certain names lose or gain popularity?

Is anyone a grandparent? What are their grandchildren's names? Good Housekeeping Top Boys & Girls Names 2019 1 Liam 2 Noah 3 William 4 James 5 Oliver 6 Benjamin 7 Elijah 8 Lucas 9 Mason 10 Logan 1 Emma 2 Olivia 3 Ava 4 Isabella 5 Sophia 6 Charlotte 7 Mia 8 Amelia 9 Harper 10 Evelyn Compared with most common names 50 years ago, in 1969.

Social Security website.

1 Michael

2 David

3 John

4 James

5 Robert

6 Mark

7 William 8 Richard

9 Thomas

10 Jeffrey

1 Lisa

2 Mary

3 Susan

4 Karen

5 Kimberly

6 Patricia

7 Linda

8 Donna

9 Michelle

10 Cynthia

MUSIC ROUND Spotify Playlist - see below, provides tracks containing girls names in the titles.

Sugar and Spice - The Searchers

If little girls are made of 'Sugar and spice and all things nice', what are little boys made of? SLUGS AND SNAILS AND PUPPY DOG TAILS

We asked if anyone could think of gender neutral names used for both sexes. VIVIEN, BEVERLEY, LESLEY

A Boy Named Sue - Johnny Cash

Can anyone think of men given girls' names as children? MARION MITCHELL MORRISON/JOHN WAYNE, SHIRLEY CRABTREE/BIG DADDY

The Killing of Georgie - Rod Stewart


When did Equal Marriage come into law? 13TH MARCH 2014

The Diary of Horace Wimp - Electric Light Orchestra

Have any members kept a diary during their lifetime?

Can anyone name any famous diarists? SAMUEL PEPYS, ANNE FRANK, ADRIAN MOLE, BRIDGET JONES

The Ballad of Davy Crockett - The Wellingtons

What did Davy Crockett famously wear on his head? A RACOON FUR HAT

What was Davy Crockett king of? THE WILD FRONTIER

Casey Jones - Johnny Cash

What was the name of his train? THE CANNONBALL EXPRESS

Can anyone remember taking a journey on board a steam train?

Wake Up Little Susie - The Everly Brothers


Sweet Caroline - Neil Diamond

Can anyone think of any other precious stones? SAPPHIRE, AMETHYST, PEARLS, TURQUOISE, OPAL

In another Neil Diamond song, what was he forever wearing? FOREVER IN BLUE JEANS

Come on Eileen - Dexys Midnight Runners

Who was the lead singer? - KEVIN ROWLAND

What did members of this group most commonly wear? DUNGAREES (Did anyone have a pair?)

Alfie - Cilla Black

What hit TV shows did Cilla Black have? SURPRISE SURPRISE & BLIND DATE

Where was she 'discovered'? AT THE CAVERN, BY THE BEATLES


Billy Don't Be A Hero - PAPER LACE

Let's remind ourselves who our Heroes are? GO AROUND THE ROOM

Grocer Jack - KEITH WEST

Ask members if they remember the old high street with a grocers shop, butchers shop, fishmongers and newsagents?

Discuss whether it is a good or bad thing we now visit superstores to do most of our shopping under one roof?

Right Said Fred - Bernard Cribbins

Which film did Bernard Cribbins star in, playing the part of a railway station porter? THE RAILWAY CHILDREN

Who were the three children who found amusement in watching the trains and waving to the passengers? BOBBIE (Jenny Agutter), PHYLLIS (Sally Thomsett) & PETER (Gary Warren)

Jimmy Mack - Martha Reeves and The Vandellas

Can anyone name any famous Jimmies? JIMMY CONNORS, JIMMY CARR, JIMMY HILL, JIMMY YOUNG

Cecilia - Simon & Garfunkel

What was Saint Cecilia the patron saint of? MUSIC

What are Simon & Garfunkel's Christian names? PAUL & ART

Daniel - Elton John

Who is Elton John married to? DAVID FURNISH

What is the name of the movie launched this week about his life story? ROCKETMAN

You Can Call Me Al - Paul Simon

What album was this song on? GRACELAND

Which rock star had a ranch by this name? ELVIS PRESLEY

Maggie May - Rod Stewart

What football team does Rod Stewart support? - CELTIC

How old is he? 74 (born 10 January 1945)

Romeo and Juliet - Dire Straits

Who was William Shakespeare's wife, whose home remains in Stratford on Avon? ANNE HATHAWAY

What were Romeo and Juliet's surnames? MONTAGUE & CAPULET

Billie Jean - Michael Jackson

What was Michael Jackson's ranch called? - NEVERLAND

Can anyone demonstrate the Moonwalk?

In another song, BEN, Michael Jackson sang about which animal? PET RAT

Simon Says - 1910 Fruitgum Company

Ask members to stand up and let's follow the commands.

* Okay, so that's 20 songs for the session, but I've added to the Playlist the following extra songs, just in case a member has that name. Or they would prefer to hear any of them in favour to those listed above ...

Oliver's Army - Elvis Costello

Can anyone name any famous Olivers? OLIVER REED, OLIVER HARDY, JAMIE OLIVER

Making Plans For Nigel - XTC. Which Nigel starred in The Young Ones? NIGEL PLANER

Denis - Blondie. Who is the lead singer of Blondie? DEBBIE HARRY

Fernando - Abba


Hit The Road Jack - Ray Charles

What disability made Ray Charles' success even more amazing? HE WAS BLIND

Danny Boy - Andy Williams


Vincent - Don McLean

Which artist was this song about? VINCENT VAN GOCH Alison - Elvis Costello

Which group supported Elvis Costello? - THE ATTRACTIONS

Annie's Song - John Denver

Which US State is Denver in? - COLORADO

Bette Davies Eyes - Kim Carnes

Can anyone think of a Bette Davies film? - ALL ABOUT EVE, WHATEVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE, NOW VOYAGER

Delilah - Tom Jones

How old is Tom Jones? - 78. Born 7 June 1940

Eleanor Rigby - The Beatles


Jolene - Dolly Parton

Where did Dolly Parton headline in 2014 and was accused of miming her performance? - GLASTONBURY (She said the only thing not fake about her is her voice!)

Layla - Derek and the Dominoes

Name the lead singer and guitarist? - ERIC CLAPTON

Lola - The Kinks

Name the musical based on The Kinks story? - SUNNY AFTERNOON

Mandy - Barry Manilow

What are Barry Manilow fans commonly referred to as? - FANILOWS

Oh! Carol - Neil Sedaka

Where was Neil Sedaka laughing in another of his most famous songs? - IN THE RAIN

Peggy Sue - Buddy Holly

The day the music died (3rd Feb 1959 Buddy Holly died in a plane crash) was later referred to in the song American Pie by whom? - DON MCLEAN

Ruby Tuesday - Rolling Stones

How many years together is celebrated on a Ruby Anniversary? - 40 YEARS


For our practical activity this week, we printed off all members' surnames Coats Of Arms (on A3 paper).

We then had members illustrate their individual Coat Of Arms with drawings and clip art to bring it to life and say something about who they are as a person.

Once members were happy with their efforts, we then laminated their pictures for them to take home.

I must say, most members were thrilled with the products of their efforts, including me!

About Me

Simon O’Donovan MBE has worked in NHS Wales for most of his adult life, supporting people with dementia, their carers and families and developing and improving services to benefit this client group. 

He recently retired from working as a Community Mental Health Nurse within a Young Onset Dementia Service and continues to contribute to weekly CST 'Friendship Group' sessions as a volunteer co-facilitator.


He has been keeping a weekly 'Young Dementia CST Blog' to share and archive tried and tested activities resources, with the ultimate aim of providing an 'off the shelf' resource library of weekly themed CST sessions which can be used on rotation throughout the year. 


The main aim of this website is to share experience and resources freely, in order that others can dip in and out and use some or all of the materials provided in their own CST work. Thus it is hoped, facilitating and supporting the provision of uplifting and enjoyable sessions that optimise people with dementia's quality of life.

This site is not owned by or affiliated to any organisation. It’s a personal commitment, a not for profit exchange of ideas and a resource library which aims to enable more widespread use of CST approaches for people with dementia. 

To this end, 'Guest Blogs' are VERY welcome, but bearing in mind that no images of clients are to be used without their express written informed consent.

Please note that some images are reproduced on this blog from the internet under the 'fair use copyright' principle, in that they will only be used for educational purposes with disability groups and in no way will be linked to profit making activities.


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