Cheltenham care home dines through the decades with special guest

Cheltenham

Residents at a care home in Cheltenham welcomed a special guest for a trip down memory lane.

Care UK’s Sandfields, on St George’s Road, were joined virtually by BBC food historian, Dr Polly Russell, from Back in Time for… for a live interactive food tasting session designed to transport residents back to their younger years.

Partnering with Care UK for the Food for Thought initiative, which sees care homes across the country celebrate their favourite foods throughout the decades, Dr Polly has worked alongside Care UK chefs to create a unique reminiscence menu. The menu features iconic foods from the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s and is designed to be used a sensory tool to encourage reminiscence in older people.

As part of the event, the home’s talented chefs, Teresa and Lee, prepared a host of bitesize delights from the menu, including kedgeree, prawn cocktail and a show stopping black forest gateau, for residents to enjoy, complemented by a selection of fine wine. They were also encouraged to share their memories with Dr Polly as she talked through the history of each dish.

Dr Polly said: “I was delighted to partner with Care UK to create a reminiscence tasting menu, and I had a fantastic time chatting to residents about some of their favourite foods throughout the ages.

“There really is something incredibly special about the way food can evoke memories and emotions, and it was wonderful to see how everyone’s faces light up when they tried each dish. Just one flavour or smell can prompt a different memory and emotion for each individual, which is why a session like this can be so powerful.

Malaika Charles, Home Manager at Sandfields, added: “We loved meeting Dr Polly virtually, and taking part in the sensory reminiscence activity. My team, as always, pulled out all the stops to deliver an outstanding experience.’’

“Here at Sandfields, we believe in the power of activity-based care, and we’re always looking for new and exciting experiences to promote wellbeing. Reminiscence activities can be extremely beneficial for older people, particularly those living with dementia, as long-term memory typically remains stronger than the short-term. Drawing on strong memories helps to boost confidence and provides an opportunity to re-live happy times, which can prompt conversation and evoke the associated emotions.

“Everyone had a great time dining through the decades and it was wonderful to hear residents share their memories during the session. It really was the restaurant experience that our residents love.”

Sandfields is a state-of-the-art care home which provides full-time residential, dementia, nursing and short-term respite care. The home, which features 90 en-suite bedrooms, has been designed to enable its residents to live active and fulfilled lives, while also promoting independence. The care home incorporates space for hobby and leisure activities and includes its own cinema, hairdressing salon, cocktail bar and café.

For more information on Sandfields, please contact Laura Sayburn, Customer Relations Manager, by emailing: laura.sayburn@careuk.com or calling 01242 801 867.

To find out more about Care UK’s partnership with Dr Polly Russell, and for more top tips on how you and your loved ones can get involved at home, visit careuk.com/food-for-thought

 

 

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