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22 Apr 2016

Volunteers from the local community in Brechin came together for a working garden party at Bearehill Care Home on Saturday 16th April to spruce up the grounds ready for residents to enjoy in the approaching summer days.

Bearehill is set in its own grounds with landscaped gardens and wooded areas, where rabbits and pheasants can be seen roaming.

Becky Herring, manager of one of the units at Bearehill, organised the event with members of her own family and friends, who were joined by eight more volunteers from the nearby Glen Ogil Estate. Together they gave the garden a spring make-over, trimming hedges, weeding and planting new flowers.

The bedding plants were donated by Brechin Garden Centre, with more mature plants being given by Becky’s parents from their own gardens at the Letham Hotel, which they run.

During the hard work there were pauses for tea breaks, lunch and afternoon tea and cakes, to keep the volunteer gardeners refreshed.

Some residents came out to meet the volunteers while others watched and waved from behind the windows that overlook the gardens.

While the group of volunteers were adding new colour to the gardens, the interior of one of the care units was also being given a bright new look thanks to Symon Mathieson of Syke Graffiti and his friend Craig Crawford, who created a nature- based mural incorporating letters from the name of the Lawrence unit.

Becky said: “The people living here are part of the community and we like to reach out to involve the community with the home. The reaction from local people was overwhelming. It’s heart-warming knowing there are people who are willing to support us and help us to make a difference.

”I want publicly to thank everyone who gave their time to put in so much hard work. The mural is a big hit with everyone who sees it and the garden is ready to be enjoyed by residents and their families. The garden looks so beautiful now that we’re going to enter it into the Four Seasons Health Care national care home garden competition.

“As a further thank you for the help we have received and to bring our friends in the community into the home to meet the residents, we are planning to have a more traditional garden party event in the summer; one that doesn’t involve the guests in working.”

Bearehill Care Home regularly organises events for residents, their families and the community. The next one planned, for families and friends, is a Race Night at Park Bar in Brechin on 29 April.

care home awards

22 Apr 2016

Two members of the team at Woodlea Care Home in Doncaster have been recognised for their care and kindness by being presented with a ROCK award.

Maintenance man Gordon McHarrie, was nominated by two residents, as he’s always there when they need him. Dennis Bramell said: “Gordon is always helpful with any job I need doing. The other day I asked for glue to mend a photo frame, and instead of giving me the glue, Gordon came and fixed the frame himself, the same day.”

Barbara Wilson said: “I ask Gordon for something and he does it straight away. Nothing is ever too much for him. I’m a little upset when he’s away on holiday.”

Senior Care Assistant Sue Andre, also received an award after being nominated by resident Elizabeth Andrews who said, “She’s so good and lovely. Sue will do absolutely anything for anyone. She will even get the things that I need from town.”

Amanda Lees, Home Manager said: “I want to congratulate Gordon and Sue on their well-deserved awards. The residents think very highly of them here, as do the rest of the team at Woodlea. Well done guys.”

A ROCK award is a nationwide honour that specifically highlights the impact a Four Season Health Care employee has made on the lives of people living in one of their care homes or day centre. An internal prize, staff are nominated for an award either by residents, their relatives, or friends, who have witnessed or experienced staff members demonstrating excellent standards of care and kindness in their role.

Would you like to work for Four Seasons? Take a look at our careers section for our list of current vacancies.

Happy Birthday

21 Apr 2016

With two resident’s birthdays within a day of each other, everyone at Cherry Trees Care Home in Barnsley tucked into two lots of birthday cake.

On Tuesday 12th April, Dennis Hamby was surprised by his family and the other residents as they held a party in his honour. Then on Thursday 14th April a party was thrown to celebrate Alice White’s 85th birthday.

Pauline Mountford, Home Manager, said: “It really was a week of celebration at the home. It was fantastic to see everyone embracing the party spirit – although the amount of cake did hinder some of the team’s diets. I want to take this opportunity to say Happy Birthday again to Dennis and Alice. We’re delighted that we’ve been able to celebrate your special day with you.”

Would you like to work for Four Seasons? Take a look at our career section for our list of current vacancies.


21 Apr 2016

The Activities Coordinator at Botham Hall Care Home in Huddersfield has been finding out the wishes of the residents, to see what fairy godmother moments the home can create.

Some of the residents wishes included: “I would like to go and look around Denby Dale, where I lived and was born”, “I wish to meet my first grandchild really soon”, “I wish to go on walks with my family and friends.” The wishes were extremely varied and certainly gave the fairy godmother food for thought.

One wish from a resident was to have a movie night, with a slight twist. So with a flick of their magic wand, that’s exactly what happened at Botham Hall.

The movie night involved residents and the team dressing up and re-enacting their favourite scenes from films.

Christina Halonka, Home Manger, said: There were lots of interpretations from a variety of films Part of the fun was trying to guess what the film was. All of the residents thoroughly enjoyed themselves, with singing and laughter echoing through the home.”

Would you like to work for Four Seasons? Take a look at our career section for our list of current vacancies.

care homes celebration

21 Apr 2016

Some of us tend to do a quick search to see if anyone famous shares the same birthday as us.

Today, Thursday 21st April sees Her Royal Highness, Queen Elizabeth II, celebrate her 90th birthday. She shares her special day with a number of residents in homes across the United Kingdom. Some of the residents have taken the time to speak to Four Seasons about their recollections, and sharing their birthday with a very special lady.

Ann Donnelly 46 years old from Dunlarg Care Home in Keady
Dunlarg Care Home will be celebrating Ann’s birthday in style indulging in her passion for worldwide cuisine. Ann used to work at the Appleby Social Education Centre, and it was here she met Princess Diana who attended the official opening. Ann is a very inquisitive lady who loves reading and researching about different countries around the world. She’s very hands on in the home, and helps to organise the activities. She’s always there to offer a helping hand to anyone in need.

John Sheedy 67 years old from Lansdowne Care Home in Cricklewood
In his younger years, John used to work as a waiter at a restaurant in Kent, as well as being known for his love of DIY. He changed career slightly when he became a carer at Lansdowne, the place he now calls home. John said: “It’s nice some of the older staff members still remember me from my carer days and it gives us a lot to chat about.” For fun, John used to go to the horse races with his family. He also enjoyed going to the pub with all of his Irish friends. Although he shares his birthday with the Queen, John has no special memories of her. However, he does say: “she’s a woman who knows what she’s doing. She’s very popular with people and I like her a lot.”

Helen Laurie 72 years old from The Beaufort Care Home in Coventry
Helen is slightly younger than the Queen, she has watched her blossom into the powerful monarch many of us love and cherish. In her younger days, Helen was a cleaner at Coventry Council House, and received a long service award from the Mayor for her hard work and dedication. She was one of 13 children and lived in Shettleson in Glasgow. She moved to Coventry aged 16. She has a daughter Lila and a grandson called Troy who is a professional boxer, who Helen is very proud of.

Sheila Reid 77 years old from Bearehill Care Home in Brechin
Sheila is very friendly and loves chatting to staff and other residents at Bearehill. She enjoys making pom poms, watching the soaps and music. She loves it when the home brings in local entertainers. Sheila enjoys getting out and about with her sister and brother-in-law and having a cup of tea and a slice of cake at Morrisons or at the Brechin Garden Centre.
Although she’s never met the Queen, Shelia loves to watch her on the television. She loves the Queens colourful outfits and the crowns that she wears.

David Steward 83 years old from Burlington Care Home in Glasgow
David who is 8 years younger than her Majesty remembers watching her coronation in 1953. His one piece of advice for her would be to keep up the good work. David was born in 1933 and completed his national service in the army, stationed in both Egypt and Malta. David told us: “Whilst I was stationed in Egypt, I was playing football and got very badly sunburnt. I was very nearly court marshalled for this as my senior officer said my wounds were self-inflicted.” After leaving the army, David met his wife Joyce. David was 23 when he met 16 year old Joyce, and told a small white lie regarding his age, telling her he was in fact 20 years old. They married on 1st June 1957 and went on to have three daughters. David then worked as a milkman, but did not like getting up very early in the morning but he did indeed enjoy his job.

Minnie Summeril 84 years old from Kingswood Lodge Care Home in Wotton-under-Edge
Kingswood Lodge Care Home have beefed up security for Minnie’s birthday, bringing in their very own Beefeater to keep her secure. Minnie enjoys watching royal TV programmes and seeing how Her Majesty has blossomed throughout her reign. In her younger years, Minnie worked on a powersames machine at Newmans in Yate. For the past 50 years she has been a member of the Women’s Institute.

Mabel Knox 89 years old from Galgorm Care Home in Ballymena
Galgorm Care Home is shining their very own spotlight, on their Queen for the day Mable Knox. Mable lives at Galgorm with her husband Charles, and they recently celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary. In her younger days Mable worked locally in the Mill (alongside Charles) and enjoyed frequent nights out to dances in the Flamingo. Mable has met the Queen on one occasion, and said: “she was a very nice and pleasant lady. She came to Ballymena to celebrate the millennium.”

Evelyn Rogerson 92 years old from Willow Court Care Home in Newcastle under Tyne
A self-proclaimed ‘plain Jane’ from West Lane used to work in a factory. She’s very outgoing and enjoys spending time with her girls. Although she wishes she would have learnt to play the piano, she likes the simplicity of being able to sit down with a cup of tea, knitting or crocheting. Two hobbies she still indulges in now and then. She remembers attending a street part for the Queen’s coronation. She recalls: “It was a wonderful day. I remember some people had a television to watch it on, but we didn’t. We listened to the wireless at somebody else’s house. I’ve never met the Queen, but if I did I’d offer her one piece of advice. That would be to be more forthcoming as she is a timid and quiet lady. I may get the chance to tell her if I get to meet her when I’m 100.”

Hannah Ventress 101 years old from Amelia House Care Home in York
Hannah, is more mature than Her Majesty, but thinks of her very fondly. She said: “I find it an honour to celebrate my birthday on the same day as the Queen. It makes me feel very special.” During her childhood, Hannah lived and worked on a farm in Lofthouse and was in service during the war. When she married she worked at Armstrongs (Shock Absorbers) on the factory floor. However, she left Armstrongs when Rowntrees came to York. She worked for Rowntrees on cream packing for 18 years before retiring. Hannah enjoys needlework, sewing and dress making, baking and gardening.

Tim Hammond, Chief Executive Officer at Four Seasons said: “I want to wish everyone who’s celebrating their birthday today many happy returns. It’s not every day you can say you share your birthday with the Queen.

“Reading through the profiles provided by some of our residents has been a wonderful eye opener. I hope you all have a fabulous day, and have a slice of cake for me.”

Everyone at Four Seasons wishes you all and Queen Elizabeth II many happy returns!

Homes across the UK have been conducting their own celebrations to commemorate Her Majesty’s birthday. This has included a number of parties being held at Romford Grange (Romford), South Park (York), Regency (Greater Manchester). We’ll keep you posted with all the other activities the homes have been up to, including lots of pictures.

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