3 Sep 19

Pat receives warm welcome from ‘Biscuit’ after short stay in hospital

Pat is a resident at Primrose Croft Care Home and although she has many friends, there is someone that she shares a unique bond with – Biscuit the Cat. Biscuit is a friendly cat that lives at Primrose Croft and spends time walking the grounds, playing in the garden and providing comfort to the residents.

Pat and Biscuit have built up a special bond and can regularly be found together in the lounge, but their schedule was disturbed last week when Pat was taken into hospital for some check-ups. While she was away, Biscuit was not acting like her usual self and spent lots of time in the front garden, pacing around the lawn.

After a few days, Pat was ready to return to Primrose Croft and be reunited with her feline friend. As the ambulance pulled into the driveway, Biscuit immediately began circling the van ready for Pat to step out. As soon as the paramedics opened the door, Biscuit jumped inside, sat on Pat’s lap and showed her how much she had been missed. Pat was so happy that Biscuit had been waiting for her and this really helped to strengthen their human-animal bond.

Having a pet has been proven to really help people living with all different types of health conditions. They provide comfort, relieve stress and uplift the resident’s overall sense of wellbeing. This really showed when Pat and Biscuit were reunited as Ruby the Care Manager was watching and said it was all very emotional.

Now, back in the comfort of each other, Biscuit has returned to her usual self and Pat is appreciating her company more than ever!

2 Sep 19

Elvis is still a hit with the residents at Buchan House

Elvis impersonator, Peter Webb, was back performing at Buchan House Care Home with all the top hits and dance moves once again. He has been singing and dancing for the people that live at Buchan House for a number of years and is a popular guest with all.

Many residents have a life long love of the original ‘King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’ and when Peter sings, he always attracts a crowd – residents, their relatives and team members always gather and get involved. This performance was no different, with everyone joining in with the classics including, Jailhouse Rock and Love Me Tender, sparking memories of dance halls, parties and good times from the past.

At Buchan House Care Home and across the rest of Excelcare’s homes, we believe that interactive music is an important part of life and should be made available to all. Research led by Live Music Now and the University of Winchester in 2018, suggests that carefully delivered music can improve quality of life for older people and provide significant benefits for care staff and care settings in general.

2 Sep 19

Excelcare celebrates Carer’s Appreciation day 2019

Here at Excelcare, we take the time to thank our team members by hosting appreciation days around the group, showing gratitude for their hard work and celebrating their involvement in the Excelcare Family.

On Thursday 29th August, we hosted Carer’s Appreciation Day. The day aimed to celebrate the Care Assistants working throughout the group and everything they do to ensure the residents remain healthy and active whilst in our care.

Care homes from across the regions of London, Essex, Milton Keynes and Cambridge took part, each hosting activities and adding decorations to show their gratitude to the Care Assistants.

Milton Keynes

Dovecote Manor Care Home in Milton Keynes decorated their reception area with bunting and balloons that read ‘thank you’ and featured pictures of the Care Assistants. This meant that as each walked in, they were greeted with a surprise and could start their day with a smile. Party hats and chocolate had been placed on the tables, so residents and team members could interact with them throughout the day, making sure everyone felt involved. The people living at Dovecote manor created a poster containing personalised messages for the team members. This was placed on display in the communal cafe for everyone to read and make additions to.

All of the Care Assistants from Dovecote Manor were given a short break together at 11;30 so they could come together, celebrate and enjoy some Tea and Cake that had been prepared by the kitchen team.


Meanwhile at Rheola Care Home, Cambridge, Care Assistants were gifted with some sweets and a card containing a special thank you message for showing commitment and kindness to the residents. They took time to pose for pictures with each other and had a quick catch up before heading back to their duties around the care home. Each Care Assistant also received a trolley token to add to their key chain, serving as a constant reminder they are special and valued members of the Excelcare family.


At Castlebar Care Home, the kitchen team made a large buffet-style lunch to thank the Care Assistants which was enjoyed in the company of residents and other team members. Everyone said it was a lovely event and one that helped to bring the people at Castlebar closer together. Each Care Assistant was also handed a thank you card and some small gifts to show they are appreciated and valued members of the team.


With lots going on at other care homes around the group, it was a day of laughter and appreciation for all the Care Assistants. Involving the residents in group celebrations allows them to share their gratitude and also builds stronger connections between the people at each care home.

Appreciation days for other team members will be held throughout the year and updates about each will be posted here.

2 Sep 19

Neath House residents enjoy day trip to Willen Lake

The residents from Neath House Care Home recently enjoyed a trip to ‘Milton Keynes most popular park‘, Willen Lake. Willen Lake is a large and exciting space, that offers treetop experiences, water sports and stunning scenery to observe during walks. With a lakeside pub also situated on-site, it’s the perfect way to spend a day in the outdoors.

The people living at Neath House enjoy regular day trips to local attractions – they give each person the opportunity to relive past memories, make new friends and feel involved with the local community. Being in a friendly, public space, also allows residents to interact with people of all different age groups and improve their verbal communication skills.

As the group of residents and team members arrived at Willen Lake, the stunning views were the first thing to grab everyone’s attention.

The large lake sits in the centre and was the first stop of the day. Residents began feeding the ducks with some bread they had brought along and enjoyed being in the company of kids and other adults doing the same thing. The group then went for a short walk around Willen Lake, watching people as they took part in different activities and everyone enjoyed the family atmosphere.

After the group had finished the route, everyone was excited for a pub lunch at The Lakehouse. With the sun shining, residents sat outside and enjoyed views of the lake while eating their lunch. Lots of compliments about the food were shared amongst the group and everyone enjoyed the eating out in the open.

The people from Neath House had a great day at Willen Lake and future trips with other residents are already being planned.


30 Aug 19

Castlemead Court Care Home launch Wall of Wishes

The team at Castlemead Care Home in Newport Pagnell have launched a Wall of Wishes to raise funds to grant the wishes of the people who live there.

“The idea came about when a resident approached me about wanting to complete a sponsored walk for The Alzheimer’s Society.” Receptionist Meghan explained. “We started planning the walk for late September and asked others what their wish would be. So far, we have a trip to a country manor house, a boat trip and a seaside trip scheduled.”

Funds are being raised by team members along with residents, who are working together to create unique pieces of artwork to be sold in the care home’s reception. There have also been a number of paintings donated by local artist Tony Kempster, who used to work at Castlemead Court.

Lifestyle Coordinator Michelle said, “So far the artwork we’ve made has been really popular. We’re so pleased that it’s something most people can get involved in and that the money raised will grant wishes!”

30 Aug 19

Residents enjoy their favourite drinks at ‘The Buchan Arms’ Bar & Pub

The people living at Buchan House recently delighted in an afternoon of socialising and laughter, spent in the care home’s very own ‘Buchan Arms Bar & Pub’.

The Buchan Arms provides a familiar and comfortable setting for residents to spend time with each other and their loved ones, the pub is open to all residents and appeals to the vast majority as it allows them to reconnect with the traditional notion of going for a drink with friends.

As a group activity last week, residents decided they wanted to enjoy their favourite tipple whilst watching a classic film; the bar offers everything from lager to sherry, beer to wine and beyond, and there is always the option to cater for any special drink requests, so that each person can enjoy their favourite!

The space always provides a great opportunity for everyone to get together either to share some laughs or, like last week, to sit and watch a film together.

30 Aug 19

Primrose treated to an afternoon of sunshine for their Summer Fete

Primrose Croft Care Home recently held their annual Summer Fete, and were treated to an afternoon of sunshine for the occasion. The team spent a very busy morning preparing for the event and making sure every little detail was perfect; colourful bunting was hung up and tables, chairs, marquees, and parasols were positioned in the well-kept garden where the residents love to sit. Games were also set out on the grass for everybody to enjoy, including tin can alley, hook the duck and skittles. In the meantime, the Primrose Croft kitchen team were preparing a mouth-watering buffet as well as an ice-cream parlour.

In the afternoon residents, were joined by their friends and family as the fete began. A nearby care home had also been invited as one of the resident’s wife lives there. Quite often, residents from both care homes meet up and socialise at joint events, which has proven to be a lovely way for everyone to make new friends!

Everyone relaxed while sitting in the sunshine enjoying their choice of mock-tails. An assortment were on offer for people to cool off with, including Mojito, pineapple & lime, ruby red and homemade lemonade. Pimms with fresh fruit was also on hand for those who wanted a real cocktail! The ice-cream parlour was also big hit with a huge variety of ice cream and toppings to choose from. The garden was filled with an array of colourful sun hats that were keeping people cool. One hat in particular did the rounds, with many people trying it on to see how the hat looked on them.

Entertainer Ryan, who sings in many of Excelcare’s Cambridge Care Homes and also works for Excelcare as a carer, sang a variety of songs throughout the event. The people who live at Primrose Croft really enjoy a dance; residents Maggie and Derek really swung their hips to the delight of the audience, as they were joined by Primrose Croft team members. As Ryan was packing up, it was clear that the audience wanted an encore; they clapped very loudly, calling out Ryan’s name, so he treated the crowd to a few more songs!

Everyone agreed how the day have been very enjoyable and thanked the team, commenting how they always work so well together to put on this special event, making everyone proud to join in at what is always such a fantastic event. They gave a special thanks to Lynda, who is the main organiser. Home Manager Ruby added “I am very proud of the team; they all put 100% into making this event memorable for everyone in attendance!”

29 Aug 19

‘Tony G’ performs hits from the 50’s, 60’s & 70’s for Glennfield Care Home

The people who live at Glennfield were recently treated to a musical visit from Tony G; Tony is a singer and guitarist and visits the care home regularly. Everyone loves his music from different decades, there is always something for everyone to enjoy! During this week’s session, the group enjoyed singing along and dancing to hits from the 50’s, 60’s & 70’s.

Music gives people a voice and a way to communicate, and can convey meaning beyond words. Participating in group music sessions can help to develop self confidence and self esteem as well as providing a wonderful opportunity for people be part of a group interacting with others while singing songs from the past.

Both those living at Glennfield and the activities team are very thankful for Tony’s visits, agreeing how he always makes the group feel on top of the world and how his visits certainly make their day!

29 Aug 19

Goldenley Care Home enjoy inter-generational activities with local nursery

When people are raised in different time periods, their values and perceptions of the world can be quite different, and this can lead to difficulties in understanding one another. Because of this gap in understanding between generations, it is important for parents and caregivers to create opportunities for children and older adults to spend time together in order to build relationships and offer social opportunities through joint activities.

The people living at Goldenley Care Home enjoyed a wonderful morning when they were joined by their local nursery, Evelyn, who moved into the care home recently, spoke about her fond memories of working with children throughout her life. The children brought along some magnetic games which everyone enjoyed learning about and playing with them, and some of the children teamed up with residents to make a lovely card for Lifestyle Coordinator Faith’s mum and dad, who were celebrating their anniversary. The group finished off the afternoon together by singing along together to some of their favourite songs.

29 Aug 19

Lime Court enjoy ‘Summer Beach Party‘ themed Music Therapy

The people living at Lime Court Care Home enjoy regular music therapy sessions as part of their activities programme, hosted by the wonderful Gunni from Kiddleydivey. The group recently enjoyed a music filled afternoon with a twist, with a ‘Summer Beach Party’ themed session.

There were smiles all round and the room was filled with laughter as everyone got into the summertime spirit by dressing up in Hawaiian leis, summer hats and funny sunglasses. Everyone enjoyed gentle chair exercises and playing musical instruments to themed music which included ‘In the Summertime’ and ‘I Do Like to be Beside the Seaside’.

“Music Therapy activities always have such a positive impact on the residents.” Commented Lifestyle Coordinator, Sarah Meachen, “They are good for social interaction, they provide gentle exercise with movement to music and the residents never fail to be entertained by the ‘lady in pink’ (Gunni)!”