Fireworks 2017 Main Charities – Brace & Marie Curie

Fireworks Main Charities – BRACE and Marie Curie


Every year Downend Round Table raises tens of thousands of pounds in the local area with YOUR support.   Remember coming to our fireworks display last year? Or perhaps standing outside on a cold winter evening waiting for the Santa Sleigh? Yes? Well you are supporting these great charities and local good causes.

During the initial planning stages for Downend Round Table Fireworks, members are polled to nominate a main charity to support. Previous partners have been Survive, Jessie May Trust and MNDa, who received £5000 or more each to support their work.

This year, we decided to do something slightly different. With Alzheimer’s more often being reported in the media, it was proposed we would choose a charity who carried out research into the disease. It is also something that has had an impact on some members on a personal level and actually we also wanted to support those that provide the palliative care.

Therefore for Downend Round Table Fireworks 2017, we chose to support 2 main charities instead of one: BRACE and Marie Curie.

What is Alzheimer’s?

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia and is a physical disease that affects the brain. During the course of the disease, proteins build up in the brain that leads to the loss of connections between nerve cells, and eventually to the death of nerve cells and loss of brain tissue.

Current treatments for Alzheimer’s disease can help boost the levels of chemical messengers in the brain, which can help with some of the symptoms.

However, Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease. This means that gradually, over time, more parts of the brain are damaged. As this happens, more symptoms develop. They also become more severe.

How quickly Alzheimer’s disease progresses, and the life expectancy of someone with it, vary greatly. On average, people with Alzheimer’s disease live for eight to ten years after the first symptoms. However, this varies a lot, depending particularly on how old the person was when they first developed Alzheimer’s.


BRACE was founded in Bristol in September 1987 by a group of scientists, clinicians and volunteers, many of whom had had the painful experience of seeing close family and friends living with dementia.

Initially run from the home of one of the founding volunteers, the charity moved in 1995 to premises at Blackberry Hill Hospital in Fishponds and again, in 2010, to Frenchay Hospital in South Gloucestershire. It is now settled in the Bristol Brain Centre at Southmead Hospital, where it moved in 2015.

Although BRACE initially confined its work to supporting research at the University of Bristol, it became a regional charity after 2006, and now defines its region as South West England and South Wales. It is currently supporting research at the Universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Plymouth, Swansea and the West of England (UWE).

Their aims are to help:

·         Provide the means by which medical science comes to understand what causes dementia in its various forms

·         achieve earlier diagnosis of dementia, thereby giving new treatments and knowledge of prevention more time to make a difference

·         find new and more powerful treatments

Please visit their website for more information:


Marie Curie nurses work night and day, in people’s homes across the UK, providing hands-on care and vital emotional support. Their hospices offer specialist round-the-clock care. And they help people throughout their illness by giving practical information, support from trained volunteers and being there when someone wants to talk.

Last year, their nurses provided more than 1.2 million hours of nursing to 33,543 people, as well as supporting their families at an incredibly difficult time.

They are a leader in research into better ways of caring for people with terminal illnesses and incorporate what they learn into the care and support they provide, and share it with others to help make care better for everyone.

Marie Curie vision:

A better life for people and their families living with a terminal illness.


To help people and their families living with a terminal illness make the most of the time they have together by delivering expert care, emotional support, research and guidance.

Please visit their website for more information: