The dementia lead at Fernhill House is looking forward to welcoming her first residents when the doors open later this month. 

Jo Hopkins, a dedicated care manager with more than 15 years’ experience, has plenty of ideas to ensure those living in the unique 36 bed dementia community enjoy themselves with a variety of day-to-day activities. 

Residents will choose for themselves what they want to do – rather than adhering to a timetable laid down by others. Staff will dress informally with a 50s and 60s theme. 

An indoor putting shed, shop and pub will provide places in which to socialise and continue hobbies, while residents can also enjoy safe access to a secure sensory garden.
The all inclusive price package means residents can enjoy wholesome nutritious meals created by award winning chef Chris Williams – and invite friends and family to dine with them as often as they like at no extra cost. The same goes for drinks in the bar, and tea and cakes in the bistro. The beauty therapists, chiropodist and hairdresser all have experience of working with people with dementia – making a trip to the salon a relaxing experience.

Jo, as well as making daily life fun and enjoyable, has a plethora of professional qualifications ensuring she understands the needs of residents with particular requirements and helping relatives feel comfortable knowing their loved ones are in safe and welcoming hands. 

As if that isn’t enough, three types of up-to-the-minute technology are in use across both the dementia and the over 65s community, which are aimed at ensuring residents’ wellbeing, keeping families informed and making the best use of staff time. 

Fernhill House is one of the first in the UK to install an acoustic monitoring system which keeps a virtual eye on residents while they are asleep and alerts staff to any unusual activity – such as falling out of bed or being distressed. 

It is one of only 270 homes in the country to have a Smartphone tool which replaces old fashioned notes, enabling all information to be shared to the central computer and making it instantly available for all members of the team. And an e-medication admin record – Wellpad - ensures residents have precisely the right dose of medication at the right time and removes any margin of error.