The doors to a new luxury care home in Chigwell have been officially opened by its first resident, together with HM Lord-Lieutenant of Essex, Jennifer Tolhurst.
The art deco-styled Lambwood Heights on Lambourne Road is already home to a number of residents, including Pat Maidman, who cut the ribbon with HM Lord-Lieutenant Jennifer Tolhurst to the applause of invited guests including Local councillors, local business representatives, residents and their families.
The 73 bedroomed purpose-built luxury care home is the newest addition to Oakland Care’s portfolio which includes Woodland Grove in Loughton and two homes on the East Sussex coast. The fabulous ‘Great Gatsby’ themed event featured entertainment from Lambourne Primary School Choir and singers from West Hatch Secondary School. Guests were invited to tour the home and see the facilities such as the cinema room, library, private dining room and hair and beauty salon while enjoying canapes and champagne.
Ishbel McGregor, 94, has been living at the home for three weeks.
“The care that Mum has received in the short time she has been at Lambwood Heights has been second to none,” said her daughter, Lynne. “She has enjoyed all the stimulating activities and social opportunities provided and it’s lovely to see her as part of, and wanting to be with, ‘the gang’ as she calls her new friends, rather than sitting in her room alone or sleeping. It’s like getting some of the old mum back again.”
A former WREN, Ishbel was a female pioneer in the insurance industry in the 1960s and ‘70s and ran her own business for many years.
“Mum was used to being at the centre of things so she was thrilled with the reception she got from the staff on the day she moved in,” remembered Lynne, “she felt like the Queen! The opening event gave her a bit of that special feeling once again.”
HM Lord-Lieutenant, Jennifer Tolhurst, commented; “It was a huge honour to be invited to come and open Lambwood Heights. A lot of work has gone into the design of the building and the rooms, and there are many things here that encourage residents to be stimulated and happy. Those are the things that really stand out to me and I can see that Oakland Care has addressed these in a big way.”
Guests were welcomed to the event by Oakland Care’s Chief Executive Officer, Joanne Balmer, and the registered Home Manager, Sonia Kasese.
“We’re very grateful to HM Lord-Lieutenant Mrs Tolhurst for taking the time out of her schedule,” said Ms Kasese. “Everyone had a wonderful afternoon and the positive mood stayed with us all for the rest of the day. We’re looking forward to welcoming many more residents over the coming weeks and offering employment to more of the local community as our household grows.”
As part of the opening celebrations, Oakland Care made a charitable donation to Mary’s Meals, a charity chosen by HM Lord-Lieutenant Jennifer Tolhurst that provides chronically hungry children with one meal every school day.