Release Date: 22-Apr-2016
Residents from KNH retirement living schemes across Kirklees have been celebrating the Queen’s 90th birthday this week.
The Belmont Strummers got the party started at Belmont Grange
Mavis Hemingway was queen for a day at Lyn Royd
They got into the spirit of the occasion by decorating their homes with photos of the queen and with flags and bunting. Guests came from other schemes and from the wider community for a variety of activities including home-made food, traditional games, stalls, music and entertainment – and of, course, a toast to Her Majesty.
For many of those attending, the celebrations were a chance to share their memories from the past nine decades of their own lives as well as of the Queen - the longest reigning British monarch has been a constant throughout their lives, and they have shared many of the same milestones such as war time, marriage, children, grandchildren and loss of loved ones.
Like the Queen, many of the older residents still enjoy an active and healthy lifestyle. Norristhorpe resident, Mary Takvam, also 90, plays in the ukulele band that performed at the Belmont Grange party and has just taken up table tennis.
She said: “The Queen and I were both in the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS) during the war, and I saw her once. I thought she was fabulous then and I still think she’s such an inspiration.”
Betty Garside, who helped organise the Belmont party, said, “Everyone has really enjoyed themselves and it’s been wonderful for everyone to come together on such a special occasion.”
According to Karina Sykes, KNH’s older people’s activities coordinator, the events brought people together to celebrate their shared history.
She said, “Our tenants were really keen to mark this important occasion in the Queen’s life because despite having very different lifestyles, they essentially grew up together and have shared a lot of the same experiences.
“They’ve done a brilliant job of organizing the parties and really enjoyed themselves on the day – it was wonderful to listen to them sharing stories and laughter. Events like these play a really important role in bringing people together, helping them make new friends and making a real difference to how they feel.”
Note: Retirement schemes taking part in the celebrations included
• Brooklands, Bradley
• Belmont Grange, Norristhorpe
• Beaumont Court, Batley
• Burrhouse Court, Honley
• Denham Court, Batley
• Lyn Royd, Linthwaite
• Roundways, Honley
• Sycamore Grange, Golcar