At Burghley Retirement Living we want our residents to settle straight into the freedoms of their retirement lifestyle. And for their new luxury retirement apartment to feel just like home. It’s for this reason that the surroundings are stylish, comfortable, warm, and welcoming. Our communal areas are light and airy – set out to encourage social interaction and our buildings are well maintained with daily checks to ensure everything is in working order. Yet we know that it’s not just a building that makes a home. What sets our luxury retirement communities apart is the real sense of community. In short, the people.
We spend a lot of time finding the right people to manage and work behind the scenes in our properties, so that our owners feel right at home. It goes way beyond qualifications, the relationship our staff have with residents is built on trust and mutual respect.
In a series of blogs over the next few months, we’ll be introducing you to the team behind the Burghley Retirement Living. First up, we meet Kerry Edwards, manager at Royle’s Lodge retirement community in Thornton-Cleveleys.
Read on for more about Kerry. What she loves about working at Royle’s Lodge in the beautiful town of Thornton-Cleveleys, and what she thinks is the best thing about her job.
What did you do before you became manager at Burghley Retirement Living in Thornton- Cleveleys?
I was a manager at a Travel Lodge hotel in London prior to this. So, it’s a bit different. I was still dealing with people on a daily basis, but this is a much nicer role compared to hospitality. It’s a beautiful job. It is a very rewarding. I always feel extremely calm, and I enjoy coming to work so much. Not many people that can say that. I wish I’d done it years ago.
What does your job involve?
Basically, as managers, we are what we call ‘buddies’. I’m here to support the apartment residents and help them with anything they need. It could be something within the building or possibly some technology that they’re not sure how to use. I can make daily check-in telephone calls with owners if that helps them to feel safe. I’m also here if they just want to come and have a chat and a cuppa. Sometimes, that 20-minute morning conversation can set us all up for a great day!
They have a service charge that they pay, and basically, they don’t have to come to me and ask for maintenance jobs to be done. We have cleaners and housekeepers for public areas. Anything in the apartments that needs doing, and I’ll organise electricians, plumbers, and people like that to come and do the job. Part and parcel of living here is me just arranging these things.
What is the best part of your job?
The best part of my job is the people, without a doubt.
Can you describe the lodge that you look after?
When we think of retirement living, a lot of people think it will be like a nursing home, but it is nothing like that at all. Everyone has their own retirement apartment, so although you have neighbours and support, you also have independence.
It’s very modern. It’s fresh. It’s clean. All the areas are really up to date. The furniture is bespoke and made to order, so it’s all quality furnishings. The apartments all come freshly painted but intentionally left as a blank canvas for owners to design them just the way they will like. Making the apartment feel personal is so important. So, as long as they’re not knocking walls down, owners can decorate, put shelves up and make it feel like home.
The biggest wow factor at Royals Lodge is the lounge. It’s the part that the majority of the people that come to visit comment on. They walk in and they just say, ‘wow’. When I show them the lounge, they often say they don’t need to see anywhere else.
We have residents that will use it on a weekend when they’ve got family coming over and there are too many of them to be in their apartment. They’ll come in and use the lounge and they’ll get a takeout or make some food and sit in the lounge and eat sociably because it’s bigger. They can get together and watch the TV or socialise. It’s fully equipped – we’ve got plates, glasses, cups, tea, coffee; everything is there for them to use.
Describe the entertainment offering at Royle’s Lodge, what events and activities do you do?
Royle’s Lodge is still quite new, so currently we do a coffee morning every week and we are working with residents on a calendar of new social events. We have lots in the pipeline!
For example, we have an afternoon tea planned in November. One of my homeowners is an artist, so we’re talking about getting the group together and doing some painting one afternoon. We looking to start a cards or games afternoon too. I’m more than happy to organise anything the residents want to do. We’re big believers that retirement living can, and should, mean an active lifestyle.
I really like organising the events and checking out what’s going in the area. If there’s a ‘golden year’s’ meal deal going on at the pub over the road, or the fish and chip shop is doing any offers, or the library’s got anything happening, I’ll keep everyone up to date. I keep up to speed with what’s happening locally that people might enjoy.
Royle’s Lodge is really in an ideal spot as it has everything on the doorstep. We’ve got a little coffee shop, a pub right next door, the bowling green, and the library, plus there’s a courtyard that has shops, a hairdressers’, and a cafe. It’s beautiful. Everything is within walking distance, so it’s perfect for everyone to access their family and social life in the community.
What in your opinion is the main advantage of moving into a property like this?
An easy, stress free and active life.
Our homeowners never need to be lonely with so many friendly neighbours, and retirement living keeps people active for longer. My residents love to travel, be a part of social groups and get out and about. Being able to just lock up and leave their apartment in safe hands frees them up to get out more. We also have guest suites, so our owners have the option of family and friends coming to stay with them, which is popular.
One of the ladies was saying to me, and she had a good point, that she was in a bungalow previously, but in the winter, she didn’t go out much because she was worried about falling. So, it’s going to be great just being able to go to the lounge where you can go and mix with people without actually going out. Sometimes when you’re older, you can go a good week without seeing anybody which is not good for anybody. That’s the idea of these places really, they’ve got the option to mingle if they want and shut the door when they don’t want to. It is fantastic.
The best thing for the residents is not being alone. I just think it keeps people active for longer as well and they have the option of family coming to stay. It’s peace of mind for their families too knowing they are safe, and they are not alone and that they’ve got somebody that is looking out for them. It takes the pressure off if they’ve got jobs and daily lives – families and grandchildren.
Find out more about retirement life at Royles Lodge CLICK HERE
Book a viewing by calling: 0800 999 1989