A NEW £10 million centre to combat Alzheimer's disease could be built in Camborne or Redruth.
The Centre of Excellence in Cornwall is aimed at being the first in the world to use musical therapy to help treat those with the disease, after studies found singing helped delay its onset.
Greg Woods, a musical therapist from St Day who has studied ways to tackle dementia, is driving the plans forward. He cites research in America, which found that singing helps sharpen cognitive functions and counters Alzheimer's.
He hopes this method will spread once it is in place in Cornwall.
And businesses across the country have already signed up to help fund it, with negotiations for big funding now in the latter stages.
He and local clinical psychologist Liz Barnes are just finalising a financial arm to seek sponsorship that will help realise their dream.
Mr Woods said: "This type of centre will be the first of its kind in the world.
"More then 44 million people suffer with Alzheimer's across the planet and it forms 62 per cent of all dementia cases."
The plans include residential buildings for those travelling from farther afield.
Dementia experts would also teach healthy lifestyle choices to prevent the build-up of beta-amyloids that can create a "plaque" on the brain leading to Alzheimer's.
Mr Woods said the centre would also offer emotional support for those who care for patients with dementia.
He has already developed an application (app) for touch screen devices, such as iPads, called SAM (Sing Along Machine) – a keyboard for Alzheimer's patients to sing along to music.
To promote the centre, Mr Woods has written a series of books that outline the techniques that could be used.
His latest offering, Sing Your Way Through Life, describes how singing can give the brain a workout to help curb dementia.
It is available at Waterstones in Truro and outlets in Redruth. A percentage of the sales will go towards funding for the planned centre.