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On the road for dementia research

Friends complete epic journey for Alzheimer's research

Four friends from Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire are celebrating after completing an 1,800-mile car rally across Europe that raised more than £5,000 for Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Mark Moody, of Newark, and his childhood friend Jason Booth, from Claypole, took part in the Staples2Naples old bangers’ rally together with Neil Dixon and Rob Pitches, crossing six countries in four days to reach the finish line in Naples.

The four were motivated to take part by Mark’s mother, Elaine, who was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease six years ago, when she was just 52. The challenge saw the four friends set off from Calais in a £200, 18-year-old Renault Laguna, sprayed bright pink.

The four-day adventure took them through France, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to Switzerland, before driving across the Alps into northern Italy and finally to Naples.

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Alzheimer's Factfile

As three quarters of people with Alzheimer's say they feel anxious or depressed here are some key facts about the disease.

  • Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia, affecting around 465,000 people in the UK.
  • Symptoms can include loss of memory, mood changes, and problems with communication and reasoning.
  • Women are slightly more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease than men.
  • It is likely that a combination of factors, including age, genetic inheritance, environmental factors, lifestyle and overall general health, are responsible for developing dementia.
  • Smokers are almost twice as likely to develop the disease as non-smokers.
  • 77% of people withdementia felt anxious or depressed.
  • Nearly 50% say they've lost friends since their diagnosis and many say they don't feel part of the community.
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