Cosham retiree hopes to raise £1,000 as she takes part in a memory walk for Alzheimer’s Society after husband is diagnosed with the disease

A RETIRED primary school teacher is calling on Portsmouth residents to join her in a fundraising memory walk.

By Emily Jessica Turner
Friday, 13th August 2021, 2:02 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th August 2021, 3:51 pm

Cosham resident Marilyn Haddock, 69, is stepping out to stop dementia after her husband Bob was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in December 2019.

On October 9, she will be taking part in the Portsmouth Memory Walk at Castle Field, held in support of Alzheimer’s Society.

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Bob and Marilyn Haddock

Although the couple have had 18 months to get used to Bob’s diagnosis, Marilyn says that it has been ‘really difficult’.

She added: ‘We’ve had very little support because restrictions meant nothing has been open.

‘The Alzheimer’s Society website and its Talking Point forum have been invaluable during that time; that’s gone some way to making us feel less isolated and alone.

‘I saw Memory Walk advertised and I decided I wanted to do my bit to help.

‘I’ve raised £460 so far but I would love to get to £1,000.

Dementia is a horrible disease and I feel so passionately that something needs to be done to eradicate it.’

Bob, who has always been interested in trains, is the man behind Hayling Light Railway.

Marilyn said: ‘Many people will know Bob had quite a few challenges along the way, but he was delighted to finally establish what is now known as Hayling Seaside Railway.

‘It’s wonderful to see families enjoying a trip on the railway, it’s always incredibly busy at this time of year as people enjoy the summer holidays.’

Originally from Australia, Marilyn taught at Castle Primary School in Portchester for 25 years.

Marion Child, Alzheimer’s Society’s head of region, said: ‘This autumn we are calling on family, friends and colleagues to put their best foot forward for Alzheimer’s Society Portsmouth Memory Walk.

‘For the 2,300 people estimated to be living with dementia in Portsmouth, the impact of coronavirus has been catastrophic and every step our fundraisers take will make a huge difference by providing a lifeline for people affected by dementia who have been worst hit.

‘We are in awe of amazing supporters like Marilyn whose fundraising efforts help fund our services which have been used over five and a half million times since the first lockdown began, showing people need us now more than ever.’

Visit or find out more about the Memory Walk at

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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