A Gillingham couple have enjoyed a romantic meal together – thanks to staff at a care home.
Maureen Riddle, 79, a resident at Bupa The Mellowes Care Home, has been married to husband Roy, 77, for 52 years and he visits her almost every day.
Maureen’s wish was to enjoy a romantic meal with her husband – and activity coordinator for The Mellowes, Mandy King and colleagues were delighted to make her dream come true as part of Bupa’s #NeverTooLate campaign.
The result was a ‘magical’ occasion that left Maureen and care home staff in tears.
The care home’s small, quiet lounge was reserved for the special occasion and Mandy laid a table and put out balloons, table confetti, party poppers, candles and flowers.
Roy had flowers sent to the home half hour before he was due to arrive - a beautiful bouquet of roses and a lovely card to say how much he loved his wife.
The couple ate a meal chosen by Maureen, with duck as the main and an ice cream Sunday for dessert. They were waited on by the care home’s laundry assistant Penny Ferguson.
Mandy said: “Everyone has dreams that they’d like to achieve and we were thrilled to be able to make Maureen’s wish come true.
“After serving the food, we left Maureen and Roy in peace so that they could chat away and enjoy the moment together.
“It was a wonderful occasion and very touching. Maureen and the staff were all in tears – it was magical moment.”
Maureen said: “It was a very emotional occasion. I was so touched by everything. It was just perfect, a dream come true.”
Maureen and Roy met at work in South Ruislip, Uxbridge, when working for Pharmaceuticals Bristol and Myers. Roy would make junior aspirin and Maureen would bottle up.
Maureen says the secret to a happy marriage is to be happy together no matter what happens, stay loyal and honest and always be reliable.
The #NeverTooLate campaign is being run across Bupa care homes to help residents live life to the full, while ticking off their bucket list. Elsewhere, in-home staff have worked to fulfil residents’ ambitions from meeting a musical icon through to seaside days out.