NorthStar go the extra mile for their multi-million pound care projects


Norwich Front Elevation 2 Bedford Front Elevation Bedford Phase II Front Gropucester Trier elevationDuring a recent tour of the UK, NorthStar director, Ian Holmes, clocked up almost 1,000 miles in just three days to ensure their innovations in modern healthcare are gearing up for completion, whilst also fitting in a family visit and finding time to buy a present for his wife!

Every month Ian goes on a tour of the sites under construction to check on progress and to make sure both program and quality are being maintained.

A day in the life of a project manager is far from repetitive and very rarely 9-5. There are tight deadlines to meet, site visits, client meetings, updating project plans, preparing presentations, phone calls, client entertainment, you name it, the days can be long and incredibly demanding.

To give you a taste of how it feels Ian kept a log of his recent work and life as a busy project manager.

Tuesday – Leave Newcastle at 6.00am ready for a 260 mile drive to a project site in Norwich to undertake a site inspection, and chair the client meeting. After five hours I have dinner with the client to talk about progress and discuss the next big project coming up in Suffolk – a care village linked to a sport and leisure master plan which will transform the town of Halesworth. After dinner it’s back to the hotel to update project plans, catch up on emails, and prepare for the following day’s meeting, not before saying goodnight to my wife and two year old daughter, then finally hitting the pillow at 11pm.

Wednesday – Another early morning, but this time I start with a gym session, catch-up on emails after, and then grab breakfast before leaving at 7am for a 100-mile car journey to Bedford.  Having built a 72 bed care home last year, this year sees the construction of a 42 extra care apartment scheme as phase two of this impressive project.  No sooner have I arrived that I carry out a site inspection then chair a client meeting to discuss how the project is getting on. After six hours it’s back in the car for a 100-mile journey to Gloucester in preparation for the following day’s meeting, but this time I do take the opportunity to stop at Bicester Shopping village to buy a belated birthday present for my wife – a must have handbag! Once again I settle into hotel life and attend to project update documents, emails and phone calls.

Thursday – 6am start I get ready for my site inspection and chairing the client meeting at our 97 bed care home scheme in Gloucester, which is in the final stages. This time I don’t have a big drive so I have time to attend to my administration on the computer. The meeting ends at 3pm and then I leave for Bristol Airport – another 50 miles – to pick up my wife, (who was thrilled with her new handbag!), and two year old daughter who had flown down from Newcastle so that we could all be together for another 100 mile drive to Swansea to catch up with family for the weekend.

Ian Holmes, director at NorthStar says: “Delivering excellence in the field of project management can be tough, you’re very rarely in the same place from day to day and in between the meetings there’s the serious stuff of ensuring the project is on schedule and running smoothly.

“It’s a way of life for NorthStar though. From Dundee to Dorset we have built over 40 care homes nationally in the last eight years. When people talk about ‘going the extra mile’ for clients…I think we can safely say that we do!”

NorthStar is an award winning care home, extra care and dementia care home design, development and project management company specialising in 5 star CQC compliant developments throughout the UK.


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