Downton Abbey inspires day of fun at Dorset care home

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An art deco-themed Dorset care home turned the clock back a whole century with a Downton Abbey-inspired day of fun.

Residents and team members at Colten Care’s Bourne View in Poole dressed as characters from the popular TV drama series set on a country estate in the post-Edwardian era.

The day began with a 1920s-style cocktail reception featuring Mimosas – champagne and chilled orange – with sherry and soft drink options.

It was followed by lunch in the home’s glitzy Hepburn restaurant consisting of recipe ideas from a Downton Abbey cookbook specially prepared by Chef Lorna Parsons.

On the menu were quails eggs, stuffed tomatoes, pork chops with mustard sauce, rustic potato cakes, Budapest cabbage and fruit and mint jelly.

The lunch whetted appetites for a murder mystery afternoon involving staff playing Downton characters and residents working through clues to solve the crime.

Among the roles featured were Lady Violet Crawley, the family matriarch played on screen by Maggie Smith, and the Earl and Countess of Grantham, played by Hugh Bonneville and Elizabeth McGovern.  

Bourne View resident Judy Lynall said: “I thought it was great that all the staff dressed up for the occasion. Everyone pulled out the stops. We had a wonderful day.”

Karen Grant A’ Court, Companionship Team Leader, said: “This was a marvellous excuse to dress up and play aristocrats for the day.

“While observing all the rules around social distancing and Covid prevention, everyone had great fun playing members of the 1920s landed gentry and the domestic servants who worked for them.”

Written by novelist and screenwriter Julian Fellowes, Downton Abbey ran for six seasons on ITV between 2010 and 2015. A film version was released in 2019. 

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PERIOD DRAMA. Bourne View resident Judy Lynall, right, in Downton Abbey costume with Companionship Team members Karen Grant A’ Court and Paul Wookey.
IN SERVICE. Team members at Colten Care’s Bourne View in Poole dressed as Downton Abbey characters, including domestic servants, for the day.
PERIOD DRAMA. Bourne View resident Judy Lynall, right, in Downton Abbey costume with Companionship Team members Karen Grant A’ Court and Paul Wookey.

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