Windsor House care home in Standish Wigan were honoured when a representative of the Royal Air Force visited their home last week.
Chris, a serving member of the RAF kindly visited the home to present John Pennington, an RAF Veteran, a collage of pictures from the Battle of Britain memorial flight.
John was so overwhelmed with Chris visiting he shared his stories of his time in the RAF as they chatted for an hour over a cup of tea. John said “Oh it was fantastic, i really liked the chap and he gave me a picture which i now have displayed in my bedroom.
John went on to say “I thought i was going to be arrested when i first saw him, he was very smart in his uniform and although he is currently the same rank as what i was in the RAF i can tell he’s going to go far, he’s a very intelligent chap.”
The visit was organised by Colette Smith Activities Coordinator at Windsor house, Colette says “It was so nice to see John honoured for the time he served for his country. His daughter Kay was also present, and she said it was so lovely to see her dad enjoy such an occasion.”
John said the visit brought back many memories from his time in the RAF and he wasn’t the only one.
For Pat Kneal another resident at Windsor House it brought back the memories of her husband who was in the RAF when they first met during WW2.
Pat said “I filled up when he
Windsor House RAF visit
walked in, he was so handsome just like my husband when we first met, we were together for 71 years and i thought it was him coming back to see me as he passed away 2 years ago, it was a lovely afternoon and memories came flooding back.”
Windsor House care home have been working on a wish tree campaign making the wishes of their residents come true and were featured in the press recently for organising a wish of one of their residents to relive her dream of travelling in a sidecar.
Gladys “Never in a million years did I think when I woke up this morning would I be riding in a side car again, I didn’t think they did things like this in care homes, I am so happy”
Gladys 89 who currently resides at Windsor House care home in Standish Wigan had the surprise of her life on Saturday Morning as the home had organised for her to go on a journey in a sidecar attached to a motorbike just like she used to travel 65 years ago.
In the 1950’s Glady’s would travel all over the country in the sidecar of her husbands motorbike and told the staff at Windsor House care home great memories of her journeys and the feel of the wind as she travelled in such style.
Gladys and her Husband in the 1950s
Windsor House care home part of Millennium care UK have been working on a wish tree project throughout the Millennium group granting the wishes of residents.
Gladys’s wish was to travel in a side car again and relive the experience she had with her husband, Gladys did not think there was even the slightest chance this wish would be granted.
Activities Co-ordinator Collette smith reached out on social media to find someone with a motorbike and sidecar, Colette was amazed when Alan Bonny got in touch and was more than happy to bring one of his vintage bikes and sidecar’s along to Windsor House for Gladys to relive her dream.
Everyone at Windsor House gathered in the front garden on Saturday morning ready to surprise Gladys, residents had deck chairs and prosecco at the ready.
Gladys came out and saw the bike but didn’t think it was there for her, when she found out she jumped out of her chair with joy.
Gladys’s family were at the home waiting for their mum to relive her dream.
Daughter Linda said “thank you so much everyone at Windsor House for organising this you are all amazing”
Son John said ” I think the last time I remember mum travelling in a side car was 1955, it’s things like this that make this place special, thanks so much”
Janet Gladys’s daughter said “It was an absolutely fantastic morning ; we can’t thank you enough for arranging this for our Mum. When I said I bet you’d like to ride in it and she said I wish I could , and I said well you can , she sprinted out of that chair quicker than me”
Kathryn Disley Manager at Windsor House said “ this is outstanding, making dreams like this come true is what we are all about at Windsor House”
Colette activity Coordinator said “ Alan and Jane who brought along the bike were so kind and helpful, they have made a very special lady very happy today, thank you so much”
Lavender Hills care home had a wonderful day on a steam train journey from Bury to Rawtenstall today, the journey brought back many memories for the residents who sat and reminisced about the war.
Approaching the train to board Lavender Hills resident Beryl said “Oh that smell takes me back, I love the smell of the burning coal.”
The train set off from the station and the Lavender Hills residents enjoyed the miles of unspoiled scenery, Beryl and Joan spoke about the areas they passed being areas where they would play as children.
Beryl said I haven’t been on a steam train for 60 years or more, all these old songs and sounds are bringing back many memories, Beryl went on to talk about her time in WW2 where she would often sleep all night in an air raid shelter, Joan said “Oh yes so did we, we had quite a large house with the air raid shelter at the back of the garden.” The songs on the train took the ladies back to the days where they could be underground for days with neighbours keeping safe from falling bombs.
A Ukulele player boarded the train and everyone sang to Pack up your troubles in your old kit bag, Daisy Daisy and many more songs from the era everyone was reminiscing about.
As the train passed the site of Trinity paper mill in Ramsbottom Beryl suddenly had a flash back to 60 years ago when she was last at the mill.
Of course there were sandwiches, cream scones and tea being served along the journey and the songs didn’t stop.
Mary Bell who will soon turn 101 said “I enjoyed singing the songs, the scones and the driver said I could drive the train if I wanted but I couldn’t get up the step.”
Mary flew a plane last year to mark her 100th Birthday, to drive the train would have marked another thing on her bucket list.
Beryl said “Oh it was superb, the unspoiled land where wild flowers had grown was so lovely and brought memories flooding back.”
Aileen Brennan – Daughter of Mary bell said “I thought it was brilliant, very well organised and the ukulele player was brilliant, we all enjoyed it very much.”
The journey was planned by Lavender Hills Activities team Nickie Brooks and Gaynor Hall who won Activities Coordinators of the year 2018 art the Great British care awards.
This week Norley Hall care home Wigan have been using Lego Therapy as part of their activities programme.
Building with Lego bricks is a multi-sensory, open-ended experience, so the building projects can be tailored to any person’s unique needs, such as dementia, blindness, deafness, mobility impairment,. But the format for most Lego therapy programs is the same.
Each participant is assigned a role, and roles are rotated through the group during the task:
Michael, Alan and Rosemary building Wilba the sheep
Engineer – oversees the design and makes sure it is followed
Builder – puts the bricks together
Supplier – keeps track of the type and colour of bricks that are needed and gives the bricks to the builder
Director – makes sure that the team is working together and communicating
Lego therapy helps Norley Hall residents to rediscover communication skills and encourages them to socialise.
Kitty short Manager at Lego Legends says ” It reawakens the senses having something to focus on, as one of the residents said it keeps the old cogs going.”
I see many personalities come out during Lego and different stories from residents for example creating a lego sheep brings stories of residents living on a farm.”
Norley Hall will be engaging in Lego therapy on a regular basis as it promotes engagement, health and well being as well as social activity.
Worthington Lake is on track to receiving the DSDC’s ‘Gold’ accreditation for excellence in dementia design which will be the first care home in the Greater Manchester and Lancashire area to do so.
Designed and built to offer bespoke and specialised dementia care Worthington Lake care home opened their doors last month to offer dementia care that is truly bespoke.
The central hub is designed to be engaging and inviting
The aim and thought process behind Worthington Lake was to create a home that is empowering and supportive, enabling residents to live as independently as possible in a non-institutional setting.
Three parts of the design process
From the initial design of Worthington Lake, consideration has been given to creating an environment that is legible to people with dementia. The home has two floors, each of which has an open plan central ‘hub’ area that encompasses a lounge, a dining room, a kitchenette and an activities room. The building has been designed so that residents are intuitively drawn down the short corridors to the communal area and visual access has been enhanced with the intention of reducing confusion, allowing each resident to see each space and understand its intended purpose.
Lighting is crucial to creating a suitable environment for people with dementia. Eyesight naturally deteriorates with age and this is further exacerbated by the symptoms of the condition. The older eye absorbs less light than it does in a younger person and an 85 year old needs 3.5 times more light than a person of 30 years old to see well. With this in mind, a rigorous lighting scheme has been designed for Worthington Lake in accordance with the recommended lux and lumen levels for each area dependent on use. Natural light is preferred and also provides health benefits such as regulating the circadian rhythm. For this reason, Worthington Lake has been designed to maximise the amount of natural light that enters the home through glazing and access to secure outdoor areas.
While a full and varied activity programme is highly beneficial in engaging residents and creating enjoyable experiences, those who have dementia in particular often report feeling confused by some activities and as if they ought to be doing something. For many people domestic chores were an important part of home life, which includes tasks such as doing the laundry and preparing and cooking meals. Therefore, a fully functional kitchenette has been included in each dining room to encourage residents to participate in these tasks if they wish to do so. For example, putting on a load of washing can offer a sense of comfort and familiarity to a person with dementia and encourage them to feel at home, while loading the machine and hanging the washing out to dry provides gentle physical exercise.
Kitchenettes encourage residents to participate in activities
Neda Ehtemam, who has been the lead in coordinating the dementia design aspect of Worthington Lake says “The aspiration of Worthington Lake was to create an environment that can be an example of best practise in Dementia care and demonstrate the growing body of research, we have ensured that a meticulous and rigorous design process has gone in to Worthington Lake, with input from cutting- edge researchers in the field from the very first stage This enables residents to carry out daily tasks independently, thus increasing their sense of purpose and improving quality of life.”
Working alongside academics at the world-renowned University of Stirling’s Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC), Worthington Lake is a truly bespoke living space for those with Dementia.
Millennium care UK featured alongside the Prime Minister and a small number of outstanding organisations last year in a document that looks back on the year in industry and Westminster. The main aim of the Review is to showcase best practice as a learning tool to the public and private sector.
Alice in wonderland came to Lavender Hills care home based in Ramsbottom to perform the most magical of plays for residents whilst they enjoyed a mad hatters themed tea party.
The tea party was served at Lavender Hills on the terrace lounge on chequered Mad Hatter’s table which was heaving with sweet treats, including cakes and chocolates with the words ‘Eat Me’, naturally, there were mini Victoria sandwiches.
The home was decorated with Alice in Wonderland characters, teapots and bunting. Getting in the spirit, residents wore bunny ears and took selfies with props.
Each resident of Lavender Hills care home were greeted by the Mad Hatter himself, Alice with a basket full of goodies, the white rabbit dressed in top hat and tails with a pocket watch and the grumpy Queen of Hearts.
Visitors came from as far as the border of Scotland and London after being invited to the whimsical tea party and play.
Bill Thompson brother of Lavender Hills resident said “It was absolutely excellent, it was well worth the journey from Carlisle, I’ve been invited to the
Halloween show in October so I will be back for that!
John Thompson said “It was so entertaining and I love how nobody was left out.”
Beryl a resident at Lavender Hills say’s “It was Super Dooper, the best thing I have ever seen.”
Harold another resident say’s “It was Magnificent, the dresses were equally magnificent.”
Residents of Lavender Hills enjoyed the performance so much they want to set up their own acting group to perform their own play later in the year.
Norley Hall residents excitedly set out on their day trip along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal on Tuesday for a day to remember.
The sun was shining, picnics were on board and everyone was in great spirits.
Elaine Lunn Activities Coordinator, said “It was lovely and peaceful slowly cruising down the canal, it was lovely to see everyone relaxed and taking in the sights and smells of the canal and its beautiful rural surroundings. We all had lunch on the boat and a singalong, we will be talking about this trip for weeks.”