Residents at Heald Farm Court (HFC) retirement village have been celebrating its 10th Anniversary. The celebrations, last week, included a party for residents and a visit from the Mayor of St Helens.
The award-winning extra care scheme, in Newton, which opened in 2009, provides a mix of apartments and bungalows for rent and home ownership and boasts a gym, bistro, hair salon and laundry. Over the years the Resident’s Focus Group, led by Torus’s Nichola Wilkinson, Health and Wellbeing Officer, has evolved into an energetic group spearheading fundraising initiatives, wellbeing and social events.
Derek Snow, one of the Treasurer of the Residents Committee, said; “The committee has been a real success, I am so proud that many of the residents come together to dedicate their time to raise money for local charities and provide additional funding for activities for the group.”
During the past ten years residents have enjoyed monthly trips around the North West, monthly music & cabaret nights, summer & Christmas fayres and they are well known for their amazing knitted displays form the HFC Craft Group, including remembrance poppies and Christmas Tree which are displayed on the front of the building.
Resident, Sandra Smith believes age is but a number and likes to keep active, adding, “We’ve got the whole package here. The staff and other residents are very welcoming, and I have the freedom to organise trips with other people.”
The anniversary celebrations included entertainment by Haydock Male Voice Choir, a buffet lunch, fun photo-booth and speeches from Torus Group CEO, Steve Coffey, who said:
“It’s evident that staff are doing an incredible job in providing a first-class environment here at Heald Farm Court. I’ve had a great day meeting some of the fantastic people who live here. Birthday girl Freda Seddon is 93 this week and it was lovely to hear that, thanks to the care she receives, she feels safe but can still cause mischief. Elsie and Carl were also telling me how they met here and are now celebrating their first year of marriage!”
The village was also decorated by the HFC Crafts Group who created lots of beautiful decorations, including a flower wall, young people from Carmel College did an excellent job providing catering services, making sure everyone had everything the needed and students from Liverpool John Moores University filmed residents about their thoughts on life at HFC.
They Mayor of St Helens, Councillor Janet Johnson opened the anniversary event by unveiling a plaque and anniversary arch, in the beautiful communal garden, which commemorated the 10th anniversary commenting that the village was a lovely place to live.
Barbara Jones moved into HFC almost 10 years ago with her son, Ian and her husband, Tom. Although Tom is sadly no longer with us, and son Ian has moved out, Barbara doesn’t feel isolated, saying; “I feel secure here in a very homely environment. There’s a friendly atmosphere here and you’ve the option to be as independent as you want to be.”
HFC is one of several retirement villages run by Torus with three new schemes due to be completed in 2020 in our three heartlands of Warrington, Liverpool and St Helens.
Torus development director, Bill Lacey, said: “Most developers focus on homes for first time buyers and growing families. Whilst that’s important, and indeed forms a large part of our development programme, we believe that there’s a real need for later life homes too.
Our specialist housing for over 55s is sensitively planned and designed, creating communities where older people can enjoy sociable, fulfilling and healthy lives.”