Wadhurst Manor Opening

Wadhurst Manor, the new 65-bed care home, on Station Road, was officially opened this week by three local heroes chosen by some of the local community that were at the well attended event.

Everyone was treated to a canapé and champagne reception and given tours of the grand home, which is set in extensive grounds with an orchard and sensory garden. Jo Bown, General Manager of Wadhurst Manor, alongside Mike Parsons, Founder and Chief Executive of Barchester Healthcare, were on hand to help the local heroes cut the ribbon, marking the momentous occasion.

The local heroes who snipped the ribbon to officially open the home using a pair of ENORMOUS scissors were:

Derek Mepham, a fundraiser and marathon enthusiast for the Hospice in the Weald, Ruth Tomkins, a campaigner and fundraiser for the first Admiral Nurse in East Sussex and Dorothy Waterhouse, a longstanding member of the community, caring for bereaved families of the surrounding area. The Wadhurst Manor team asked local groups, societies and businesses to nominate people in the community that make a significant contribution through charitable endeavours or their community support.

Unfortunately the fourth Local Hero, Stan Cosham, a pillar of the Wadhurst community who has co-written a book about the village and set up a museum of local memorabilia in an Anderson shelter in his back garden, could not be there. It is hoped that he will be well enough to visit the home for the Open Weekend from 8th to 9th October.

The Wadhurst Manor brass band played outside on the terrace in the glorious sunshine while local magician, Richard Mellers, conjured for the gathered crowds and caricaturist Ric Machin captured the audience's wide smiles. A pianist, Rick Pentecost, played at intervals inside the reception area and visiting Pets As Therapy dog, Marnee, and her owner Noel Austin, enjoyed all the fuss and attention from prospective residents and guests.

Jo Bown, General Manager at Wadhurst, was thrilled and said: ''Bricks and mortar are not enough to make a Barchester home, and I have been fortunate to recruit an amazing bunch of people many from Wadhurst village itself, who have started to make the place really tick. I look forward to welcoming our first resident on Monday, 3rd October.''