23rd February 2022
Couples were reunited at a dementia-specialist care home in Cheltenham for a very special Valentine’s Day after residents were separated from spouses during the Covid lockdown in 2021.
Twelve months later, the loving couples, many have been married for more than 50 years, were able to spend a romantic Valentine’s Day with their sweethearts once more at Wentworth Court Nursing Home.
Care assistants from the home, dressed for the part in crisp white shirts and black skirts and trousers, served couples throughout the day with morning coffee and cakes, fish and chips or afternoon tea and fizz.
Wellbeing Manager, Suzanne Meadows said: “Residents have been working on gifts for their sweethearts for weeks, decorating the homes with hearts and flowers and looking forward their dates with loved ones.
“After missing out on being together for last year’s Valentine’s Day, we wanted to ensure that we did something extraordinary, and came up with the idea of recreating the Palm Court at The Ritz vibe, complete with romantic surroundings, delicious food and exemplary service. Just seeing our couples smiling and enjoying being together is very special.”
The team spent the morning helping residents to look their best, painting the ladies’ nails and applying make-up, helping the men shave, dress and look dapper for their dates.
Joan Wakeman visited her husband, Ron for morning coffee and pastries. The couple, originally from Hartlepool have been married for 64 years and met when Ron served in the Royal Navy. His career took the couple to Cheltenham, with Ron working for at the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) for more than 30 years.
Joan said: “It’s been such a sad time being apart when I’ve been used to visiting Ron five times a week. Today has been special, spending time together. We’ve had a wonderful life together.”
Also spending precious time together were childhood sweethearts. Angie and Tony D’Avanzo from Bourton on the Water in Gloucestershire. The couple met 54 years ago and have been married for 45 years.
“Tony was a mechanic and used to come for coffee and ham rolls in a café I used to work in,” said Angie.
“It was love at first sight, I chased him like mad but I got him in the end! We how have four children, two boys and two girls and five grandchildren.”
“We hadn’t missed a Valentine’s Day together until last year, so I was so excited to come in and see him today, it’s meant the world.”
For more information about Wentworth Court, call 01242 263334 or visit www.wentworthct.com