Priddy Farmhouse – November 2016:
Just to thank you for Daryl’s weekend away. Andy was great and everyone commented on how brilliantly he supported Daryl.
The highlight of Mum’s weekend was Daryl singing in front of the whole group and everyone agreed that he had a great rock voice.
Bradbury House – February 2016:
Cerie D – ‘I am really happy and excited doing this job!’.
DayCare – January 2016:
Testimonial from Linda Small:
The Old Rectory – August 2008:
My gratitude to The Old Rectory and the Bradbury House organisation –
I would like to tell you about my experience with Bradbury House and what a difference it has made to my sister Susie, who suffers from a rare genetic disorder called Phenylketenuria. Some seven years ago, the home Susan had lived in happily for some years was sold, and Susie moved to a new home which in turn was sold two years later. After the upset of moving to a third home with yet more new staff and residents, Susan’s behaviour deteriorated badly and they could not cope with her. She was admitted to an Assessment and Intervention unit. Following her discharge, and two homes later, Susan was so disturbed and her behaviour so difficult that we were finding it difficult to persuade any home to take her. She was actually on the point of being admitted as an in-patient to an adult psychiatric ward at a London hospital in desperation when, fortunately, at the eleventh hour she was offered a temporary bed at a small home in Twickenham.
Although the staff at the Twickenham home were very kind and did all they could to help Susan, she was desperately unhappy and frustrated and was liable to attack staff and residents without warning, as well as harm herself. We were at our wits end and although she had spent her life until then in Kent, Mum had moved down to join us in Bath and we decided to move Susie down to be closer to her family.
After hours of searching on the internet, I came across Bradbury House and had an interesting and hopeful conversation with the manager, who believed that the staff there would be able to cope with Susan’s now very anti-social behaviour. Bradbury House had recently purchased an old vicarage in Chewton Mendip where Phil felt that Susan would be best placed and although the conversion of The Old Rectory was not yet complete, we were shown around the building and visited Bendalls Farm. After many phone calls and discussion with Phil, and following his visit to assess Susan at the home in Twickenham, he confirmed that he thought The Old Rectory would be right for Susan. We, in turn, felt reassured by our discussions and we liked the feel of the Old Rectory.
Some months later when the building work was completed, Susie became one of the first residents. On arrival there, Susie was in a terrible state. Her hair was matted as nobody could get close enough to her to brush it for her and she trusted nobody. I was constantly on tenterhooks that The Old Rectory would ring me to say that they couldn’t cope with her and that we would have to take her away – although I was always reassured that this would not happen.
The transformation over these past four years has been nothing short of a miracle. Susan took some months to settle, and to start to trust again. In those early days at The Old Rectory, she would become stressed whenever we took her out as I think she feared being moved yet again. But with time, Susie became calmer and more settled and the staff could begin to work with her. Their patience and support was amazing and, although her behaviour was still quite aggressive in the beginning, she began to respond to their kindness and patience, allowed the staff to come closer and within months was happy to be hugged and cuddled, have her hair brushed and regained her faith in the human race. She was happy to come out for lunch with Mum and me and always returned happily to the Old Rectory. Mum (aged 90) told me several times that she could now ‘die happy’!
The staff not only encouraged Susan back to her old self, but we all discovered a side of Susie which had not been suspected . . . a sense of fun and a sense of humour along with a love of communicating! She really enjoys people. The drugs she had been on over the past few years to try and control her aggression, but which also caused confusion and dopiness, were stopped and the staff, having done some research into Susan’s genetic disorder, put her on a special diet with spectacular results. I was so impressed that the chef was willing to cook with different ingredients and try out different recipes just for Susan and her specially prepared meals are always imaginative and tasty – even down to her beautiful birthday cake made with special flour! The diet has meant a lot of extra work for the staff, I know, but the positive result for them has been that Susie’s behaviour has improved to the point where her special carers, Laura and Lukas, were able to take her away for a week’s holiday in a caravan on the Dorset coast where they all had a really good time and apparently Susan’s behaviour was impeccable!
I wanted to write this for anyone who may be in the predicament I was in and looking for the right home for a loved one. It is warming to see how each resident is treated as a unique and special individual and the staff encourage the very best out of each of them. The support, care, kindness and patience shown to Susan have had such a dramatic and positive effect on her and I know that she feels safe, loved and secure and finally feels she is ‘home’. Thank you to you all from the bottom of my heart.