Our history

We became known as Dementia Carers Count in 2018, but the organisation has a rich history beginning over 150 years earlier.

The Surgical Aid Society was founded in June 1862 by William Watson, a City lawyer, with the aim of distributing medical and surgical aids to those in need. Up until the year 2000 the Society provided a total of 1,929,210 surgical aids to those in need; not only in the UK, but in many other countries across the world. When the National Health Service took over this work, the Society set up homes to care for older people, including people with dementia.

Edward VII became our first Royal patron in 1901. George V succeeded him in 1910 and two years later granted the ‘Royal’ title so that we became the Royal Surgical Aid Society. Dementia Carers Count still retains its Royal status today.

On our 150th anniversary the Board agreed that we should focus on supporting family carers of people with dementia. Our new name, Dementia Carers Count, was chosen to reflect our renewed mission and purpose.




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