Weekly update from The Priory – 27th April 2021

The world is returning to normal……..The Priory Friday afternoon Cream Teas are back and they were served in the garden. Joy all round!

Not only were the Cream Teas back, but James came along on Thursday and performed our first garden concert of the year and potentially even more importantly, Sarah, our hairdresser returned as well. Quite an epic week for The Priory. Of course, our thanks go to Gemma for managing the lockdown locks for the last 4/5 months.

All of our entertainers and activities are very keen to return which is wonderful. So over the next few weeks, in addition to James, we will be welcoming back Paul with UkulelePiddle, Kieran on keyboards, Alyson with KiddleyDivey and Bernice with her seated yoga. And finally, Helen, our chiropodist, will be returning on 10th May. Not sure if she is classified as entertainment, even though she is a lovely lady and provides an essential service for many of our residents.

As part of our return to normal, the visits that everyone has been making have been so important for each and every resident – and the staff. It is a real sign that life is straightening itself out again. Thank you to everyone for keeping to the procedures – it makes our life and everyone else’s, so much easier and safer.

A number of families have asked if they can take resident’s out. At the moment, home visits or any indoor/communal visits require a 14 day isolation on their return. Frustrating I know, but the guidelines are there not just to keep individuals safe, but the home as a whole. However, as an extension to visits to The Priory, we are discussing with Wiltshire Council if families could take residents out for a walk around the block or perhaps to the park just the other side of the Malmesbury Road. Once we have a decision on that, we will draw up a risk assessment and put in place any additional procedures to implement it safely. Hopefully, as long as everyone is sensible, stays outside and avoids groups etc, we may be allowed to make it work. More on this next week – in the first of our soon to be fortnightly updates.

Before we move on to last week’s update, we need to welcome Jean Ham to The Priory. Jean joined us on Monday (yesterday) so it will be a few days before we all get to meet her properly, but it will lovely to get to know you over the coming weeks and we all hope you really enjoy your time with us. With the world getting back to normal, you’ve joined at a perfect time. And of course, Edna, Kathleen and Miriam have all been able to join us over the last few weeks and to be welcomed properly to The Priory.

Finally, April has been very, very busy for staff birthdays – six in total! Three of those were “significant” events, but of course, no names, no ages. I say no names, but in no particular order, either by age or significance, very happy birthdays go to Chij, Clare, Doreen, Helen, Monika and Paula. Alphabetically is the safest!

Last week being St George’s Day, we took the opportunity to bring out our red, white and blue and of course, to add to it. Monday was flag day and we quickly realised that the St George’s flag is a lot easier than the Union Jack, so lots of red and white. Moving from flags on Monday, Tuesday’s flower arranging was also red and white. And surprisingly or not, the theme continued on Wednesday with flower pictures. These were very impressive – using smaller flowers and petals to make larger flower pictures – a wonderful idea.

Thursday was St George’s Day and we started it with a St George’s Day Quiz. Ten questions on the man himself, England and English history. Some quite difficult questions were in there, so everyone did really well. In 3rd place was Edna Rouse, joint 2nd were Miriam Smith and Margaret Boswell, with 1st place going to Elsie Hollinshead, scoring a magnificent 8 out of 10. Well done to all.

Thursday afternoon was the welcome return of James Hogg – a wonderful musician and a lovely man. Though the wind was a bit keen, the majority of residents were outside in the sun, wrapped up in rugs if needed. The music was great but the atmosphere was amazing – sun, music, tambourines, tapping feet, singing voices and of course……..hot chocolate with marshmallows. It puts a smile on my face just thinking about it now.

With the weather holding firm for Friday, we had our second day in the garden. The morning was spent making, cutting and baking scones for the afternoon. Then, following a lunchtime nap – if needed – Cream Teas were served in the garden. Scones, cream and jam, finger sandwiches and sausage rolls, strawberries and cake, all topped off with a glass of Pimms – or a cuppa if preferred.

As I said at the top, the world is returning to normal……… Joy all round!