Category: Awareness Days

National Hobby Month

National Hobby Month

January is National Hobby Month. Perhaps the New Year Resolution is to try a new hobby or focus on the hobbies you enjoy.

Hobbies are great as they can relieve stress, challenge your brain, be social, good or bad for your health.

Within our homes we have residents interested in so many different things. We try to cater for as many hobbies as possible. We have exercise based: Tai-Chi, armchair aerobics, gardening (vegetable allotment, flower arranging), music (playing instruments, outside entertainers, dancing and singing. Lets not forget interest in animals, falconry, cooking, iPad clubs and knitting.

Which new hobbies are you going to set yourself this month?

Our homes are focusing on linking with their local communities including links with nursery’s and local schools. Perhaps one of your New Year goals is to take part in some volunteering, if so we would like to hear from you. We have numerous activities you can get involved in throughout the month. Email or call 01392 346442 for more information.

Looking back at 2017

Looking back at 2017

As 2017 draws to a close it’s a great time to stop and reflect on the year. Our homes have been busy through the year providing exceptional care and creating magical moments.

Our dedicated staff have joined residents and families in a number of fundraising events. These have included the Alzheimer’s Society Memory Walk, Macmillan Coffee Morning, Moretonhampstead Carnival, Rowcrofts Colour Run and Save the Children Christmas Jumper Day.

Our social calendars have been filled with awareness celebrations including National Curry Week, Knitting Week, National Care Home Open Day, Denbury Flower & Produce Show and Plymouth in Bloom.

Our staff have continued their professional development with courses including fire awareness, first aid, end of life, pain management, Parkinson’s, wound care, safeguarding, food hygiene, care and diabetes. Many staff experienced The Virtual Dementia Tour: an eye opening experience which is medically and scientifically proven to be the closest experience that we can give a person with a healthy brain an experience of what dementia might be like.

Reflecting on the year brings back so many fond memories of individuals, parties and events. We can’t possibly mention them all but hope you’ll find the time to reflect on 2017.

We look forward to 2018



This year National Poetry Day falls on Thursday 28th September 2017 and the theme is ‘Freedom’. It was founded in 1994 by charity Forward Arts Foundation, who like to celebrate the importance and excellence of things poetry.

National Poetry Day is an annual celebration that is set to inspire as many people in the UK as possible and grow their audience. The day is supported by organisations such as the BBC, the Royal Mail and leading publishers, booksellers, libraries and schools.

You can get involved by visiting their website or by joining in the campaign on social media using the hashtag #NationalPoetryDay to share how you will be celebrating the day. Don’t forget to tag us @PeninsulaCare1 (Twitter) or @PeninsulaCareHome (Facebook) as we would love to share your love of poetry.

We would love to take this opportunity to share with you some of our budding writers, The Parkland Poets, who have produced three truly inspirational poems based on their experience and training with Dementia. You can find their videos on our Peninsula Care Home You Tube channel

Happy National Poetry Day for tomorrow!

Easter at Peninsula Care Homes

Easter at Peninsula Care Homes

Peninsula Care Homes would like to wish everyone a lovely Easter and invites you to join in our Easter celebrations in our Devon care homes. Our budding Parkland Poets have surprised us with another touching poem to reflect Easter time at Peninsula Care Homes.


Easter at Peninsula is a special time,

To over indulge in chocolate and wine,

We’ll sing and dance along to the Easter parade,

While drinking a sherry and lemonade.


We will help residents to make an Easter bonnet,

And they will choose what they want upon it.

They may choose a rose or a love bird two,

With a wide floppy brim to keep off the dew.


Everyone loves visits from family and friends,

But Easter time is not where it ends,

We will all celebrate with yummy food,

simnel cake, hot cross buns and chocolate too.


We will still remember why Easter is here,

And let residents know to us they are very dear,

We’ll celebrate the re birth of Christ,

And we will make the day for everyone ever so nice.

by our lovely Parkland Poets

World Down Syndrome Day 2017

World Down Syndrome Day 2017

If you visit bramble Down on March 21st don’t be surprised if you see everyone wearing odd socks, short socks, long socks, t-shirts with socks on.  This is all part of campaign to raise awareness of Down Syndrome during its 12th anniversary of Word Down Syndrome Day.

The day hopes to improve awareness of Down Syndrome and enable people with Down Syndrome to speak up, to be heard and influence government policy and action and to be fully included in the community.

For our Bramble Down Manager Sue, the campaign is very close to her heart as her grandson Luca has Down Syndrome. Luca’s mum says “When we first heard Luca’s diagnosis we were sent into a whirlwind of questions and emotions.  With such little knowledge and understanding of Down Syndrome it was difficult to comprehend what the future might hold for him and for us as a family. If I knew then what I know now there is no way I’d have been so petrified of what lay head.  We believe in the work that the Down Syndrome Association (DSA) do.  With such a huge variety of information and resources from new parents through to adulthood, the DSA is always my first port of call with any questions I might have or help we might need.”

Sue says that like all her grandchildren “every milestone he has achieved has been celebrated just as any other child, it has just taken him a little longer but he achieved them and that’s what matters. As a family, Luca has enriched our lives and we have supported the Downs Syndrome Association. Some of our fund raising efforts have included a sponsored sky dive, organising a Father Christmas grotto as well as a Christmas Faye to name a few.”

Every year on 21st March we all wear our odd socks and encourage our work places to raise money for the World Down Syndrome Day. It is time to do this again so we will all be in our bright fun coloured odd socks.

#wdsd17 #MyVoiceMyCommunity

National Pie Week

National Pie Week

It’s National Pie week this week in Britain and we’ve been discussing pies in our homes.  One interesting debate was what makes a pie a pie?  For some it has to have pastry somewhere in the dish whether it be the base, the topping or all over.  For others it’s something cooked in a “pie dish” so could be cottage pie, shepherd’s pie.

There was a petition in recent years to define a pie as “a baked dish of fruit, or meat and vegetables, typically with a top and base of pastry” anything without a pastry base should not be classed as a pie. One resident said it was only a pie if it had some booze in the sauce naming steak and ale pie as the winner.

With all the talk of savoury pies it’s important not to forget sweet pies like traditional apple pie or mince pies at Christmas.  Both are favourites with many of our residents.

According to research 75% of people enjoy a pie at least once a month.  Whatever your view we hope you enjoy National Pie Week…. The Homes menu’s include Steak & Kidney Pie, Cottage Pie and Chicken & Mushroom pie along with fruit pies for dessert.

National Hot Breakfast Month

National Hot Breakfast Month

February is National Hot Breakfast Month.  Within our homes porridge is a popular choice as is some or all elements of a full English Breakfast.  Breakfast is often reported to be the most important meal of the day with sayings “eat like a King at breakfast” often quoted.  It breaks the fast of the night and is important part of achieving good nutrition and hydration. Many of us grab something on the go, or quickly eat a bowl of cereal or round of toast before dashing off.  On these recent cold mornings something hot may break the cycle of coldness.

So what is your favourite hot breakfast?  In Japan the traditional breakfast would include rice, seafood and fermented foods.  In India different areas have their own traditions and specialities which may include stuffed breads and spicy vegetables.  In America the stack of pancakes, bacon and maple syrup is popular.    Other options you could consider eggs benedict, scrambled eggs on toast, and boiled eggs with soldiers, frittata, pancakes or waffles.

To accompany your hot breakfast what is your drink of choice: cold juice, nice cup of tea or a coffee?

We thank Robin at Cornerways for sharing a picture of a cooked breakfast he prepared for one the residents breakfast. It certainly looks like a feast fit for a King and an excellent way to start the day.


National Hot Tea Month

National Hot Tea Month

January is National Hot Tea Month a fantastic excuse to have an extra cup of tea and indulge in a biscuit or piece of cake.

Tea has been drunk for thousands of years, originating from China. From there it grew in prominence until it was one of the most important beverages in the world. Some say it rivals coffee as the drink of choice for mornings.

Tea is mostly drunk hot but iced tea or cold tea because you simply forget to drink it while it was hot is often experienced.

What’s your favourite tea? We have arranged some tea tasting within the homes from fruit teas, herbal teas to different leaves of tea. Our tea tasting adds to our collection of activities to encourage hydration. We will see what the favourite is and then have the discussion on how to make the perfect cup of tea. Does the milk go in first or not at all, lemon, honey, weak tea or “builder’s brew”, cup and saucer or mug and so many choices.

Cornerways have already had one tasting session trying peppermint tea, peach & raspberries, and strawberry & raspberry tea. The favourite by a large margin was strawberry & raspberry with no one liking peppermint tea.

So put the kettle on and enjoy your favourite tea whatever that may be. If you’re in Moretonhampstead on January 20th please do join our coffee/tea morning.

Guest Blog: Remembering the Salcombe Lifeboat disaster in its centenary year

Guest Blog: Remembering the Salcombe Lifeboat disaster in its centenary year

David Arnold, Chairman of Peninsula Care Homes Ltd looks into the centenary year of the Salcombe Lifeboat disaster.

On October 27th 2016 we mark the centenary of the Salcombe lifeboat disaster, which saw the sinking of the Salcombe lifeboat William and Emma with the loss of 13 of its 15 man crew. Several special events have been arranged to recognise the incredible bravery of those who were lost. 

Having grown up in Salcombe after my parents moved there from Lancashire I feel a very personal connection to the town, the sea and the lifeboat service. The names of the crew who died are commemorated on the war memorial that overlooks the harbour. 

On October 27th 1916, in the middle of the First World War, the lifeboat was called out to save the crew of the Western Lass which had run aground off Prawle Point. People described the conditions as the worst in living memory, with huge breakers over the Salcombe bar.   The bar is a ridge that runs across the mouth of the harbour and at low tide and in any stormy weather must be treated with great respect.

Against all the odds the lifeboat crew managed to row out over the bar and reach the Western Lass. However on arriving there they found that all the crew had been rescued using rocket apparatus from the shore. It was a terrible irony that the lifeboat needn’t have left its base at South Sands, the crew of the Western Lass had already been rescued minutes before the lifeboat set off but in those days communications were slow and very basic.


When the crew tried to return to Salcombe huge waves over the bar caused the boat to capsize. Thirteen out of the fifteen crewmen died including more than one from the same family. This happened in full sight of families positioned on the cliffs but there was nothing anyone could do to help.

Of the two survivors one never wanted to go to sea again, whilst the other Eddie Distin agreed to become coxswain of a new lifeboat which he led from 1938 to 1971.

I was lucky enough to grow up in Salcombe and remember Eddie Distin as a larger than life figure in the town. As boys we were always thrilled to hear the double rockets whoosh into the sky and explode, calling men to station on a shout and frightening every seagull in the harbour but also telling every boat in the harbour to clear a way for the lifeboat. 

Sadly the rockets have been banned for ‘health and safety’ reasons and the crew are alerted with pagers. All eyes turn to the sea as the lifeboat sets off on another rescue.  I am very fortunate to have returned to Salcombe after many years away and the sound of the lifeboat engine is immediately recognisable and we get up to look at what is happening every single launch. 


There are many people in the emergency services and armed forces who are willing to risk their lives and wellbeing to keep us all safe. So as we mark the centenary of the Salcombe lifeboat disaster on October 27th let’s take a moment to think about all the brave men and women who put themselves in harms way to protect us, and let us have a special prayer for those in peril on the sea.

Guest Blog: Apple Day

Guest Blog: Apple Day

Peninsula Care Homes Care Manager, Margaret Haxton, shares her love of the humble apple in time for Apple Day.

Apple Day, 21 October, was launched in 1990 by Common Ground. The aspiration was to create a calendar custom, an autumn holiday. Up to this time I always thought of apples as…well, apples. But on looking into apples more carefully, I discovered that every apple planted from seed is unique, like every human being.

I had no idea that genetically, the apple behaves like humans do. It reproduces thanks to a male and female parent and the offspring will bear some family resemblance but will be different from them both. Every apple grown from a single seed is possibly a new variety of apple.  The only way to get more trees of a variety you like is to take cuttings and graft them on to new rootstock that means for instance, every Bramley apple tree in the world is a cutting of a cutting of a cutting that can be traced back to one tree that grew randomly from a seed in Nottinghamshire. The same applies to all other established varieties, the Granny Smith from a tree in Sydney, Australia, and so on.

Because you can use the apple for cooking so many things, such as apple pies, toffee apples, cider, etc., it has always been important for rural communities, so much so that in past days people would gather in winter in the orchards and wassail theses trees, sing their praises, and driving out evil spirits from their branches with screaming and firing off guns. It sounds a bit pagan, because it is. In the late nineties wassailing was known to only a few West Country Morris men, but now a wassail attracts hundreds of people anxious to hold on to our traditions, much like other traditions as Beating the Bounds, where a few years ago only the parish councillors walked the parish bounds and beating landmarks to ensure the next parish knew where the boundaries were, are now accompanied by many walkers also determined not to forget our ancient past.

For those who love facts here are a few about apples:

  1. Apples contain no fat, sodium or cholesterol and are a good source of fibre.
  2. There are 7,000 cultivated and named varieties in the world.
  3. Apple trees take four to five years to produce their first fruit.
  4. Apples ripen six to 10 times faster at room temperature than if they are refrigerated.
  5. The largest apple ever picked weighed 3 pounds.
  6. Apples are a member of the rose family.
  7. Apples account for 50 percent of international deciduous fruit tree production.
  8. A peck of apples weighs 10.5 pounds. A bushel of apples weighs about 42 pounds.

Well enough talking, I am off now to bake an apple and blackberry crumble, from apples grown in the bountiful orchard at Coppelia House and blackberries from my local hedgerows. Mustn’t forget the Clotted Cream!