Festive play date with difference fills Keynsham care home with laughter

December 23 2018
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A Keynsham care centre was filled with laughter when elderly residents and toddlers from a local playgroup met up for a festive play date with a difference before Christmas.

More than 50 children and adults spent a morning making Christmas cards and painting at Curo’s Hawthorn Court Extra Care Centre on December 14, as well as singing some carols together.

Thanks to Hawthorns resident Colin O’Donnell, the children also got to meet Santa, who gave them all a book each provided by Bath and North East Somerset Council’s children’s service.

B&NES senior early years practitioner Katie Marke said it was the second session held at the home, following a fireworks-themed event in November, and was arranged after requests from both residents and parents for a return visit.

Mum Becky Walsh came along with her two-year-old son Casper, who painted with Hawthorn Court resident Joan. Becky said: “I live nearby and walk past Hawthorn Court most days. I heard about this through a friend so I decided to drop in today. It’s nice to hear about events like this. I think this is a great idea.”

Angela McManus was visiting with her son Jude and added: “We don’t have grandparents so this is a really nice connection to have and it brings a smile to everyone’s faces.”

Hawthorn Court’s oldest resident Dorothy Thompson – who turned 100 in December – was at the session and said: “I watched a programme about this on TV and it’s lovely to see the children here today enjoying themselves.”

Curo sheltered housing officer Terri Underhill said: “It’s wonderful to see both ends of the age spectrum enjoying each other’s company. This is the second time we’ve held this session and the older residents at Hawthorn Court will be talking about this for weeks and weeks afterwards. You can see how happy events like this make everyone.”