Our very talented resident, Mr Ross has put together a video of images of Castle Farm including the beautiful surroundings of Gosforth and the excellent facilities of our residential care home.
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Dora Brown and Her Daughters Pamela Hutton and Sheila Forster
Mum has been a resident at Castle Farm for the past six years and she has been settled since the day she moved in. She is looked after so well and we know she is very happy, which is all we can ask for.
We visit her regularly and have got to know lots of the other residents and members of staff which makes visiting so much more enjoyable as we feel like we are visiting mum at home.
As our way of saying thanks for the effort the team put in to care for mum we come in to the home with our singing group the Davenport Singers to perform for the residents. We initially sang as a one off when mum first moved in, but the staff and residents now ask us to come back each year around Christmas and we absolutely love it.
We sing popular songs from the musicals as well as some traditional ‘geordie’ favourites such as ‘Dance to ya daddy’ and ‘The Cullercoats Fish Lass’ which the residents really enjoy; it’s good to know that we can give something back to the team and the other residents who help to enhance mum’s life in her later years.
When mum decided it was time to leave the family house, we spent a long time considering our options. We looked at some newly build state of the art care homes, and whilst the facilities were great, they just didn’t feel like home.
But when we visited The Grove, it instantly felt like home from home and both mum and I felt that the transition from the family home in to a care home would be far easier in such comfortable, homely, familiar surroundings.
Being able to bring our own bedding and furniture ensured that mum felt at home from day one.
I remember on the first visit to The Grove, we walked past the kitchen and I was overwhelmed by the amount of fresh fruit and vegetables that the chef was chopping for that day’s meals which was a huge selling point to me as mum had lost all interest in cooking and indeed eating and this was beginning to show.
Like so many elderly people who have been fiercely independent, mum never wanted to be a burden and would seldom ask my sister or I for help. Yet she had reached a point where she needed our help, so our visits became less about spending time together but more about getting jobs done.
Now visiting mum is a joy, we have time to chat and enjoy each other’s company as all her practical needs are met by the lovely staff.
And despite never asking us for help, mum is quite comfortable asking the care team for help when she needs it, although to be honest this is very seldom because they seem to be one step ahead of us in terms of meeting her needs – even offering to help buy birthday cards!
Whilst knowing all the practical things are being taken care of in terms of meals, laundry and medicines, one of the biggest things for us is to know that mum is not lonely and that there are always people there for her, be it to help in a time of need or to simply spend time having a chat.
An added bonus is that mum has made some lovely new friends with some of the other residents, which at her time in life you don’t really expect and it is lovely to see that despite her age and frailty she is still enjoying her life.
I have always been a keen gardener and had a big old house in Gosforth with a big old garden which I had always tended to. To be honest, losing my garden was one of the biggest concerns about leaving my home, so as soon as I walked in to Linden Road and saw the beautiful garden that Jim cares for so fondly, I was taken by it. When June said that I could take on an area of the garden as my own that was me sold! Whilst I’m unable to do what I used to in the garden, I still have my own little rose garden where I grow flowers that we cut for vases in the house.
The central location of the house is just perfect for me as I still like to get out and about, visiting friends and visiting the garden centres. I absolutely love classical music so regularly attend shows at the Sage which I can get to quite easily in the car, by public transport or even by taxi.
I love the fact I have my own front door key and my own door bell, yet have the reassurance that June and the others are there should I need them and I needn’t worry about making meals and house maintenance; instead I can get on and enjoy my latter years.
It was my Mum who decided the time was right to seek some extra care and support for her and my father. Recognising that my Dad’s needs were likely to become too much for her to deal with alone, she asked me to look for a care home in Newcastle where the pair of them could live.
I was given a pretty clear brief of what she wanted and what she didn’t – modern with a pleasant south facing outlook, gardens to enjoy and 2 rooms for her and Dad – and narrowed it down to a few for her to choose from.
Still living in Scotland, they made the journey down to visit my shortlist. Castle Farm was the first on our list and when Mum walked through the door she said, “This is where I want to live” and asked me to cancel the other visits.
To make things even better, two rooms had become available opposite each other so the team at Castle Farm helped us to transform one in to a sitting room and the other a bedroom for my parents to share, using Mum and Dad’s own furniture.
It really was a wise move on her part as she really couldn’t be happier here, which in turn makes me content and gives me peace of mind.
As my Dad’s care needs grew, Mum was still with him but knew that there was a team of experienced people on hand to help. This was mutually beneficial; Dad received the care he needed, whilst Mum was able to relax and get the rest that she needed too.
Sadly my Dad passed away but Mum has continued to live at Castle Farm. Despite her relative level of fitness and good health for a lady of her age (91), she receives a great level of care from the team, most of which have been there since the day she arrived.
Gone are the mundane tasks such as house work, cooking and washing as this is all taken care of. Instead she takes part in a range of activities, goes on trips out to the shops, the cinema and garden centres and has made a number of friends who she enjoys chatting to.
She can enjoy her days: whether she chooses to sit in her room where she loves to read, look at the TV or watch the birds feeding in the well tended garden or meet up with others in the lounge, the choice is hers. It is this freedom to choose that I think sets Castle Farm apart from other care homes I have visited and is one of the main reasons why my Mum has enjoyed living here for the past six years.
She could never be lonely at Castle Farm as there is always somebody to talk to, be it the manager Chris, a member of the team or one of the residents – it really does feel like an extended family where everyone is made to feel welcome.
What other people have said about castle farm
“I feel really safe and secure here. I have no cause for concern, and I have no worries about living here.”
“It’s so homely and warm here, they make it as much like home as they can.”
“I have no concerns whatsoever. I’d put my family and friends in there”
“This is a very well run home, the manager is very good and has a very professional approach. I have no concerns whatsoever about the management of this home.”
“We couldn’t imagine a better home. There’s a lovely, relaxed and caring feel to it. Its a very friendly place and very homely.”
“This is the best home in Newcastle; excellent care from staff who respect people’s dignity and privacy, with courtesy, understanding, humour and patience.”
“I have worked here for over ten years and I’ve never seen anything that concerned me.”
“This is a really well-run home. I don’t know how it could be improved”