Loughborough care home, Woodthorpe Lodge
, has been crowned the South Midlands Regional Winner of Ideal Carehomes’ annual ‘Gardens in Bloom’ competition.
The contest, which launched in June, encourages both staff and residents to work together to embrace their love of the great outdoors by devising and implementing an exciting revamp for their outdoor spaces that everybody can enjoy during the summer months.
Woodthorpe Lodge residents and staff joined forces to introduce a new ‘birds kitchen’ themed garden masterpiece. The team and residents decided on the theme during their monthly residents meeting, in which residents were able to put forward ideas for things they would like to be included in the final design.
Residents wanted to create a space to relax and birdwatch, therefore the Woodthorpe Woodwork Club set to work to create beautiful birdhouses and other bird feeding stations to encourage some ‘fly in’ visits. Keeping on the wildlife theme, residents painted large stones with ladybird and hedgehog designs to encourage other wildlife to their home.
Residents also wanted to pay homage to their many successful afternoon tea parities so created a quirky flowerbed display featuring brightly coloured flowers planted in teapots and teacups which were kindly donated by the local community. The garden area now features a raised herb garden which includes the residents favourite herbs such as Basil, Sage, Thyme and Rosemary- once fully grown the herbs will be given to the chef to garnish delicious lunches and evening meals.
88-year-old Resident, Magaret Hubbard, said, ‘I am so proud of how our bird theme project turned out, we have already seen lots of winged visitors dropping in for a mealworm treat! When the judges arrived to take a look at our garden the weather was glorious and we were able to tell them about our contributions and what the space means to us – I am so pleased we are regional winners and we are already thinking of other ideas to add before the national judging!’
General Manager, Preet Hundal, said, ‘We are absolutely thrilled to be crowned the regional south Midlands winner. All of the credit must go to our amazing residents who embraced the competition with such gusto. We are extremely grateful to have had such overwhelming support from our resident’s families and our staff team that generously donated to our kitchen inspired flowerbed. It really has been a labour of love and we are so glad to see the judges were as thrilled with our garden creation as we are!’
Stacey Linn, Ideal Carehomes’ Director, said, ‘Our wonderful team and residents at Woodthorpe Lodge should be very proud to be our South Midlands winner. Our judges were astonished at just how much effort and thought had clearly gone into their project and how much our residents families and friends rallied together to bring plans to life. We know that our residents take huge pride in their garden areas and we hope that the warm weather continues so that they can enjoy the fruits of their labour even more. I now look forward to visiting each of our regional winners as part of the judging panel and helping to crown our national winner in the coming weeks!’
The home now enters the final round of the competition, whereby Ideal Carehomes panel of judges will visit all regional winners in four weeks’ time to decide upon a national victor.