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Ulster man's £1,000 memory challenge

The managing director of a local company has thrown down the gauntlet in a unique challenge - prove you've a better memory than mine and I'll give you £1,000!

Barry Philips, MD of Antrim-based training company legal-island, has only recently started researching and practising training in memory techniques.

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According to new research carried out by his company, almost a third of people (31.6%) simply forget about important work meetings and an embarrassing 66% have forgotten a client or business contact’s name when greeting them or introducing them to others.

The unusual ‘Beat the Director’ competition will challenge participants to test their memory skills by attempting to memorise a pack of 52 playing cards in the fastest time possible.

Barry has been able to perform the task in around five minutes - and anyone who beats his time in the competition will win £1,000.

The entry fee is £30 which will go directly to the Alzheimer's Society Northern Ireland.

Heats will be held on Saturday and Sunday, June `19 and 20, at the Legal-Island Training Centre, Station Road, Antrim. The ten highest scoring participants at the heats will go through to compete in the final which will be held on Saturday, June. 26.

Anyone who beats the MD’s time at the final will win £1,000 in prize money, totalling a potential prize fund of up to £10,000.

Barry, a qualifed barrister who has worked at the European Parliament and the European Court of Human Rights, said: “I believe memory skills are important for mental health, just as exercise is essential for physical health. Memory training techniques are a great way to exercise the mind and improve mental wellbeing and we want to raise awareness of this important issue, both in the workplace and at home.

“As our research has shown, memory skills play an important role in business and poor memory can often let people down during simple but essential business activities such as meetings and networking. However there are basic training techniques which can significantly help improve memory skills and which can have a positive impact in many areas of professional life.”

Claire Keatinge, Director of Alzheimer’s Society Northern Ireland said: “There are 17,000 people living with dementia in Northern Ireland. The Alzheimer’s Society dementia helpline; information and support services; respite care; activities for people with dementia; and carers programmes, all support people who are affected by dementia. We depend on voluntary donations to support all of our activities and very much welcome the Legal-Island ‘Beat the Director’ fundraising and memory challenge.”

Anyone wishing to participate in the Memory Challenge can register here .

Belfast Telegraph