A theatre group from Elmbridge are staging a play looking at Alzheimer's disease as they mark their 70th anniversary.

With the theatre season fast approaching, the group announced that their first production of the season would be Bothered and Bewildered by Gail Young, "a bittersweet comedy" which examines the experience of living with dementia.

Nick Handel, a spokesperson for the group, told the Surrey Comet that the drama and its subject matter were close to many of those involved with Ember Players.

Mr Handel said: "One of our senior members lost her husband to vascular dementia just before Christmas. His name was Bill Sellars, a distinguished BBC drama producer who, among many other hit shows, was responsible for 'All Creatures Great and Small' with Christopher Timothy and Robert Hardy."

Mr Handel added that Ember Players' production would be supporting dementia charity Homelink, which is based in Twickenham.

Ember Players Director Elaine Sesemann agreed with Mr Handel's assessment: "The themes of the play are especially poignant for the Ember Players," she said.

"One of our leading members, professional actress June Bland who lives in West Molesey, recently lost her husband Bill to Vascular Dementia having cared for him until he needed full-time professional help," Ms Sesemann said.

Ms Bland spoke about her experiences caring for Bill following the Ember Players announcement.

Ms Bland said: "Even in the darkest times, Bill and I smiled a lot. Later, at the Ashton Lodge Care Home, he'd admire the landscape pictures on the wall. 'They're set designs,

aren't they?' said the creative TV producer still rooted deep within him. 'Yes!' I'd reply, 'Maybe we could do Peter Pan and fly the nurses in on wires."

"Bill had vascular dementia which is a complete breakdown of the connection between the brain and the rest of the body. As his memory deteriorated, he needed constant care.

"It's lonely and very painful living with someone you've loved and admired, watching helplessly as their mind and body drift away."

The Ember Players celebrated their 70th anniversary last Saturday – with guests converging on Ember Sports Club to celebrate a remarkable history of local theatre since the group's founding in 1949.

Since then the Thespian collective have presented a large range of dramas from such playwrights as William Shakespeare, Harold Pinter, Peter Shaffer and more.

The Ember Players production of “Bothered and Bewildered” is at The Cecil Hepworth Playhouse, Walton on Thames, from Thursday May 2 to Saturday May 4 at 8 pm. Tickets at

£13 are available from www.ticketsource.co.uk/emberplayers or by phoning 07752-655087