Staff at Abbey Grange Care & Nursing Home recently granted their resident John Beever’s wish to utilise his painting and decorating skills to help redecorate one of the units in the care home. John had a long career as an interior decorator and was eager to get back to it. This was organised as part of Country Court’s Make a Wish initiative. Residents are given the opportunity to tell staff about somewhere they have always wanted to go or a special activity they always wanted to do.
‘John has been eager to help our maintenance man Craig paint our Mappin unit. It’s been brilliant to finally get him involved, it’s great to see him making a meaningful contribution to the upkeep of our home. John is living with dementia but you could see by watching him paint, how his muscle memory took him straight back to how he used to work. He worked with a very steady hand especially when cutting in’ Commented activity coordinator Sharon.
‘Craig our maintenance man’s dad used to work with John. So, it was nice to get both Craig and John working together, reminiscing about their link to painting and decorating’ commented Home Manager Kerry Peach. ‘We try to find activities for people that are meaningful to them and support people to continue their interests when they come to live with us at Abbey Grange’.
John worked in the Royal Air Force for 2 years as an Aircraftsman working on signals. Once he left John wanted a change and started his career in painting and decorating at the age of 16 years old. He asked many companies in the local community if he could be their apprentice but got turned down quite a bit, until he came across a company called John Clixsby Decorators. John recalls ‘He was a good man John and was a pleasure to work for. He gave me a chance to learn the trade and thrive within it’.
At work John used to wear bib and brace white overalls and said it ‘Looks smarter in white if you ever got paint splatters on it’. John also recalled his technique to wallpaper ceilings ‘I would put 2 steps and a long plank together, which we would walk across and would never look where we were going’.
Once John had learnt all the tricks of the trade working for John Clixsby he decided to bite the bullet and work self-employed. This is where he continued his love for painting and decorating and went on to wallpaper places like his mum’s farmhouse and the wealthy houses in and around the area. John commented ‘I can't remember not being a painter and decorator and I can't remember not learning and loving how to do it.’
To find out more about life at about Abbey Grange Care & Nursing Home or to make an appointment to view the home please contact Kerry Peach, The home manager on 07463 370654 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.