Pub opens at Suffolk care home as delighted residents raise a glass in celebration
Delighted residents at a Stowmarket care home are raising a glass to staff after they took the unusual step of opening a pub on site.
Residents at the Chilton Meadows Bupa Care Home in Onehouse are celebrating the move, prompted by concerns that people living there were finding it difficult to get to other pubs in the area, by inviting their families along for a tipple.
Launched in time for the festive season, the new pub is located inside Jean’s Retreat, a summer house built in memory of a former staff member.
Now bosses have revealed plans to build on the success of the pub – by introducing a sweet shop and cafe as well.
Resident experience manager Lisa Alexander said: “It’s been really fun celebrating the opening of the pub over the last few weeks, we had a fireworks night launch as well. It looks the part inside – we’ve got pumps that make it look like a real pub. It’s somewhere that people can sit and chat like they used to, and invite their families over for a drink, to unwind and have a good time.
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“Our maintenance man was hard at work making it and his effort has really paid off.
“We’re also hoping that because this project is doing so well, we might also have a sweet shop or a cafe at the home too.
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“It would be somewhere where residents could reminisce and have a cup of tea,”
The care home currently has a requires improvement rating from the Care Quality Commission, and bosses hope initiatives like this show they are improving as they help to expand the range of activities on offer for residents.
The pub’s launch was celebrated with fireworks, burgers and drinks – much to the delight of the residents, staff, families and friends.
Reg Gladwell, a 97-year-old volunteer, officially opened it for the use of residents and relatives.
He said: “I am overjoyed that the summer house is now a pub for all to use. I have fond memories to share of when the summerhouse was donated in memory of a former staff member, whom I was very close to.
“The pub is a chance for the residents to still enjoy a tipple or two with their fellow residents, especially with Christmas approaching.
“Many of the residents regularly went to the pubs before moving to the home, so no longer are they missing out on what they did before coming to Chilton Meadows, it brings back great memories for them.”