30 May 2019
Nine FirstPort retirement developments and two Development Managers have been recognised as being ‘simply the best’ at the Elderly Accommodation Counsel (EAC) Awards 2019.
Exemplary Development Managers
FirstPort’s Diane MacGregor and Dawn Toop were recognised in the Exemplary Performance Award for a Scheme Manager by the Association of Retirement Housing Managers.
Dawn Toop took second place and was recognised for the fantastic community she has created at Homelake House in Poole, Dorset, including the introduction of a much-loved resident choir. Dawn was also awarded for her commitment to colleagues as a trainer, ambassador, and spokesperson for her fellow Development Managers.
Speaking about Dawn, residents Jennifer and Alan Reynolds, said: “It amazes us how much Dawn goes beyond her job description to make us all happy and safe.”
Diane MacGregor took third place and was recognised for how she’s enhanced the lives of her residents through innovative wellness initiatives that have created something truly special for her residents at Homegarth House and Orchard Court (where she previously worked), both in Leeds. These include belly dancing classes and a primary school initiative which saw local school children regularly visit the development and make lasting relationships with residents.
Speaking about Diane, resident at Homegarth House, Ann O’Grady, said: “Diane was like a breath of fresh air to us. She immediately set about putting the place in order and impressed us with her enthusiasm and professional efficiency.”
Award Winning Developments
The EAC celebrates the best specialist housing for older people, engaging some 19,000 residents, staff, visitors and volunteers to vote for their favourite scheme. 300 developments were recognised by the EAC out of a total of 25,000 retirement housing schemes or developments nationwide. Two FirstPort developments were selected as the nation’s favourite – Llys Pegasus winning gold and Westfield Court winning bronze in the national category. Top of the regional categories were:
- Magdalene Court, Baldock
- Barnes Wallis Court, West Byfleet
- Llys Pegasus, Cardiff
- Westfield Court, Andover
- Penn Court, Calne
- Aynsley Court, Solihull
- Hornbeam Court, Leeds
- Homeborough House, Hythe
- Merryfield Court, Tonbridge
Speaking about the gold-winning development, Llys Pegasus, Heulwen Egerton, Chair of the Residents’ Association said: “This is what good retirement living is all about. Whilst living independently, we all work together and with our excellent Development Manager, to make this a happy and united community”.
Speaking about the silver-winning development, Westfield Court, resident, Wendy Baker, said: I am very pleased I made the decision to move here 18 months ago. It has relieved me of the pressure of maintenance on a family sized house and garden. I couldn’t wish for a better place. Westfield Court is well maintained with a nice garden, and a communal lounge for a friendly social life. I feel secure and comfortable living here.”