Sunderland care home gets taste of the 1950s with new diner

Residents Rita Brown, left, and Mary Hird, right, with staff member Natalie Heffner.
Residents Rita Brown, left, and Mary Hird, right, with staff member Natalie Heffner.

Residents of a Sunderland care home are taking a step back to the 1950s – thanks to a specially-created diner.

Lansbury Court Care Home, based in Parkhouse Avenue, has adorned the walls of its diner with 1950s memorabilia, while there are padded leather booths in candy-stripe blue, and a replica Wurlitzer Jukebox.

Resident Barry Woodey with staff member Natalie Heffner.

Resident Barry Woodey with staff member Natalie Heffner.

The sounds of the 1950s can now regularly be heard in the 55-bedroom home, with the diner opened as part of a £220,000 investment at the property.

Home manager Suzanne McKie said: “The room looks absolutely brilliant, and makes such a difference to the home and the facilities we offer.

“We’ve really seen a number of our residents engage in this space, and some of them never want to leave after they’ve been.

“They know all the words and moves to the songs.”

We’ve really seen a number of our residents engage in this space, and some of them never want to leave after they’ve been

Suzanne McKie

The new room has been created with dementia-friendly features in mind, such as warm, mood lighting and tactile signage and memorabilia.

The bar area of the home was added at the end of last year, with this new space the latest addition as part of the investment.

Tracey Tomlinson, director of customer experience at the care home, said: “It’s important that our homes feel ‘homely’, but are also stimulating environments for our residents.

“We have been creating and rolling out a series of dementia-friendly spaces, and investing heavily in this area of our decoration and upgrades.

Orchard Care Homes staff member Natalie Heffner.

Orchard Care Homes staff member Natalie Heffner.

“We’re delighted that the Lansbury Court diner has been such a hit and we look forward to working with other homes in the Sunderland area to enhance this further.”