Hartlepool United hero Joe Allon set to walk the walk for dementia

CHARITY BACKING: Pools legend Joe Allon launches the Tyneside Memory Walk on the banks of the Tyne yesterday
CHARITY BACKING: Pools legend Joe Allon launches the Tyneside Memory Walk on the banks of the Tyne yesterday

POOLS hero Joe Allon took on a whole new ball game to help the fight to kick dementia into touch.

He launched this year’s Alzheimer’s Society Tyneside Memory Walk with charity supporters at Baltic Square, Gateshead, yesterday.

Joe, who remains a Pools legend after two goal-laden spells at The Vic, has experience of dementia which had a devastating impact on his mum Elizabeth.

Joe said: “Tyneside Memory Walk is a fantastic way to raise vital funds for Alzheimer’s Society services, research and campaigns to break down the taboo attached to dementia.

“I’m really pleased that I can do my bit to raise awareness by taking part in the event.

“My mum meant the world to me but when she was diagnosed with dementia I bottled everything up, which was the worst thing I could do.

“I didn’t really understand much about the disease and I couldn’t cope as my mum’s condition deteriorated. It was really hard to take.

“Thankfully my dad was there to look after her and he did brilliantly well. Memory Walk will help bring dementia out into the open which is vitally important.”

Anyone can sign up now for the event at memorywalk.org.uk/Tyneside. It takes place on Saturday, September 28, with a choice of 2km and 10 km distances.

Starting and finishing at the iconic Baltic Square, the route takes walkers over the Millennium Bridge and along Quayside riverside paths.

There are now more than 16,500 people diagnosed with the condition in the North-East.