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A “magical coincidence” – Kate and Eileen’s special connection

When Eileen moved into Sanctuary Care’s Westmead Residential Care Home in Droitwich, she was completely unaware of the incredible bond she would share with activities co-ordinator Kate.

At the age of 13, Eileen started work at the Worcester Royal Porcelain factory – becoming friends with Kate’s grandfather Owen, who passed away when Kate was just three.

Their history has given them such a special connection – Eileen and Kate love to share stories about Owen, who was 15 when he met Eileen.

Eileen’s daughter Susan says: “We couldn’t believe it the day we found out! Kate showed mum some photos of Owen and it all came back to her like it was yesterday. It was magical.

Kate explains: “My heart melted when I found out! It has been so interesting meeting someone outside our family who knew him and can tell me stories about him. Eileen has told me about when he and my grandmother got together and how in love they were.

Eileen was also there the day Owen had a terrible accident at the porcelain works. Someone turned on a lathe he was repairing, resulting in him losing his arm. Owen survived and was offered a job for life.

Kate has shared newspaper cuttings about the accident, as Owen became very well-known locally at the time. There were even fundraising events held for him.

An end of an era

When the war started, Eileen joined the Women’s Land Army, picking crops in the fields. The American troops were stationed nearby, and Susan recalls Eileen had many tales to tell!

Susan adds: “I think they were quite handsome – her overriding impression of them was that they all had good teeth! Every Saturday they would collect the girls from the villages, and they taught them the Jitterbug!

Kate and Eileen not only spend time reminiscing, but Kate has also helped Eileen to come out of her shell since she moved in – building her confidence to enjoy enriching activities with her fellow residents.

The pair’s special bond is just one of example of how our teams across our homes go above and beyond to deliver truly person-centred care and enrich lives every single day.

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