Mathew's star turn at Hagley Place opening

Hagley Place, the new 60-bed care home in Ludlow was officially opened today by local hero Mathew Clarke, a recent Olympic torchbearer in Ludlow and member of the Bishop’s Castle Army Cadets.

Mathew, 15, has a rare genetic disorder and was supported by his proud family and the Ludlow Army Cadet Force Shropshire (ACF) that turned out for a parade inspection in the care home’s magnificent courtyard. Guests, including the Mayor of Ludlow and Mike Parsons, Founder and Chief Executive of Barchester, took tours of the home and enjoyed a performance by the children of Ludlow infant school, including Rhian Brown who named the home earlier this year.

Mathew said: “I have had the honour of carrying the Olympic torch in Ludlow and now I’m honoured to  unveil a plaque to open Hagley Place care home. I am excited about completing my work experience at the home and working with Dean David the General Manager who has offered me a place on the Barchester apprenticeship scheme.”

The team also named a star in the Hercules Constellation after Mathew because he has been such a heroic star. Helen Maiello, Senior Regional Operations Director, presented Mathew with a laptop computer that has special speech recognition software to aid him in his learning.

Dean David, General Manager at the home, said: "What a fantastic day we’ve had. I was thrilled that Mathew opened our home and has decided to do work experience with us. We will now focus on growing our community with residents and staff to make this house a home.”