Residents at a specialist dementia care home in Wellington, Somerset, had a great start to the autumn at a glamping-themed tea party where the stars of the show were two visiting caravans.
The idea was sparked by reminiscences of one of the residents, John Burley, who often chats with staff about family holidays he enjoyed in his own beloved caravan in years gone by.
John Burley was thrilled to see the visiting vans and said: “One of these looks just like my old caravan. This is so lovely – I’ve had a good day.”
John’s son, Graham, said: “Dad always went to town when getting things ready for trips away.”
The first caravan to arrive was Eevee, belonging to the Hill family from Ilminster. The caravan was open for residents to take a look around, and they were encouraged to take a seat and have a relaxed chat together.
Mum, Tracy Hill, said: “We arrived to find lovely bunting, a gazebo and tables waiting to be filled. Soon the car park was buzzing with conversation, and everyone was tucking into tea and cakes.”
Eevee, a six-berth Lunar Zenith, was named after a Pokémon character by Tracy’s sons, Matthew, Thomas and Samuel.
Tracy said: “My youngest son really enjoyed sharing his fishing game with residents and visitors, and my older boys enjoyed making new friends among the residents and dressing up for Dolly the photo booth.”
Dolly – a cleverly-converted vintage caravan photo booth provided by local wedding specialists Cover with Love – also caused great hilarity among the residents who enjoyed the inflatable props and wigs provided for their use, and the playful touch of having the camera button disguised as a tea pot.
Caz Coles of Cover with Love said: “It was lovely to be a part of Camelot Care’s tea party and we are thrilled that everyone enjoyed our latest addition.”
Richard Dempslake, activities co-ordinator for Camelot House and Lodge, said: “Having the visiting caravans and dressing up for photos really made our residents’ day, and they also loved the holiday-themed soundtrack we found for the occasion, and the fabulous home-made cakes and tea-time spread.”
Camelot House’s glamping tea party is part of a varied programme of activities for Camelot Care’s residents, who all live with memory loss. Camelot Care has other homes in Bridgwater and Plymouth.