July 5, 2012

Newsletter June 2012

News from Steve McQuinn Registered Provider

It is wonderful to see Benslow Management going from strength to strength. Firstly I would like to welcome Peter Hodges to the Management Team. He joined us in May as Manager at Robin Hood House. I would like to thank Louise Carr, Deputy Manager who has done a magnificent job managing the home till we found a successful recruit. Whilst managing the home she has also managed to successfully achieve her NVQ4. So congratulations!!

Three of our homes, Chiltern View, Robin Hood House and Highbury Rise have had Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspections. The outcome of these visits confirmed they were all fully compliant in line with the Essential standards of quality and safety. These inspection reports will be available on our website shortly; otherwise they can be viewed on

As I go around all the homes I am often approached by family and friends of our service users congratulating us on the dedication and kindness of our staff. This is very pleasing to hear as it is often only the bad news we hear in the press.

We have started the preparation for the roof and associated works at Robin Hood so you should start to see some big improvements on this area of the home in the next few months as we start to progress with the extension and refurbishment of this beautiful building. I hope to publish some pictures in the next newsletter so you can see our progress.

Can I thank you for your continued support and look forward to meeting you in the lounges, dining rooms and corridors of our Benslow homes.

News from the Homes


There has been a lot of Royal Activity at Highbury Rise this month. The Queens Jubilee was celebrated over the extended Bank Holiday with an afternoon tea party, music and raffle. Staff members dressed for the occasion. We all raised a glass of wine, plus three cheers to Her Majesty. The weather didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits and everyone had a wonderful day. The Queen has also recently visited Hitchin as part of her Jubilee Tour. On the 14thJune Highbury Rise staff and service users were given celebrity treatment at Hitchin Station when they had a VIP position inside the station to greet the Queen as she arrived.

It was a very special occasion for those that attended and we have some wonderful pictures of the event which should now be on display at the home.

Our thanks to our new Activity Organiser at the home that in her first week was able to arrange this right royal event. How do you beat that!!! Maria has lots of ideas and plans for future activity events, which I am sure she will keep you all informed about.

Congratulations to staff at the home; Nadine on achieving her NVQ2 and Julie her NVQ3. We also welcome back Mavis from maternity leave after the birth of her son. We also welcome another new member of staff, Geraldine who has recently joined the Housekeeping Team.

Congratulations to our Cooks, Jane and Debbie who have both achieved their Professional Cookery qualification.


As part of our Sports Relief Event in March, Watford Football Club Ladies Team visited Chiltern View. The Manager, Rose Sharp and Registered Provider, Steve McQuinn were sponsored to wear local rivals, Luton Football Team shirts. This was quite a challenge for Steve as he is a long standing Watford season ticket holder. Everyone enjoyed this sporting event and two of our service users, Agnes and Marie gave the Watford Ladies Team a repertoire of their singing talents.

The home now has a new Activity Organiser, Clare who is proving to be a huge success. There are many events that take place at the home. Friday Afternoon Tea has really gone down well. Service User’s have been shopping in the town and enjoy visiting the local coffee shops for tea and cakes. We have introduced old time music sessions which have proved to be a great hit with service users singing and even dancing. The karaoke machine is also used for other musical events. Iris’s organ playing is another musical event that service user’s and family enjoy at the home.

The more relaxing pastimes that have been happening around the home include painting the garden furniture in readiness for summer. Who knows when that is likely to be!! Our next task will be painting the fence for those service users who wish to participate.

Chiltern View now has a Family Association which is open to all families. Meetings have already taken place this year and lots of ideas to improve the services available at the home have been put forward. Some of these you will now see being implemented around the home.

A new kitchen for service users and families is now open at the home along with a new 1950’s Lounge which our residents are now enjoying using. A Family Association notice board is now in the main hallway. We would like to thank David for agreeing to be Chairperson.

We would like to welcome some new staff members to the home.

Rosanna, Sandra, Susan, Clare, Deborah & Pauline who has rejoined us after a short break.


It has been a lovely atmosphere here at Benslow. Many birthdays have been celebrated. Our best wishes go to Gladys, Joyce, Tony, Harry, Winifred and Michael.

Rebecca has now taken on the post of Activity Organiser at the home. You will still see Louise around the home but she has gone back to a caring role.

The Queens Diamond Jubilee was celebrated in style this year. The home was decorated from top to bottom and was a lovely sight to see. Buffet and drinks were enjoyed by all. Karaoke echoed all around, laughing and joking. It was a very joyous occasion.

Euro 2012 has been followed by a few of the residents at the home. Flags from all the Countries participating have been hung around the home. The country’s flags were removed as the teams went out of the competition. As matches have taken place snacks have been served from the Countries playing.

Wimbledon is now with us and we are all looking forward to cucumber sandwiches and strawberries and cream. The residents may even enjoy some Pimms!!

Plans for this years Summer Fete in August are well underway. More news will follow soon.

We would also like to congratulate Sandra Tyers the home Manager in getting through to the finals for The Manager of the Year with the Hertfordshire Care Providers Association Awards for 2012. The Awards Ceremony is in November. We would like to wish her well.


Peter Hodges would like to thank everyone for the warm welcome he received. A cheese and wine evening was held for him to meet all the resident’s families and friends.

The home has been a hive of activity since Katie departed on her world travels at the end of January. Pragati has been looking after the Activity post until Katie returns. However, Katie has been keeping in touch with the home and you can see pictures posted around the home of the exotic locations that she has visited so far.

The residents have enjoyed regular trips into town and the village.

May Day this year was celebrated by the residents making a May Pole which was great fun.

The residents have also been dodging the awful rain we have had lately to do a spot of gardening. Sunflowers have been planted in the garden and we now just need some sunshine to bring them on!

On the 21st May residents from Robin Hood House and Chiltern View all enjoyed a day trip to Southend on Sea. They visited the Sea Life Centre and went on the train trip along the pier. They all then sat down and enjoyed fish and chips along the seafront. Everyone slept well on the way back after all that sea air!!

The Queens Diamond Jubilee Weekend was celebrated with an afternoon cream tea party. The weather was awful but everyone enjoyed themselves.

A trip is planned at the end of July to Whipsnade Zoo. Dates to be confirmed. Our annual Summer Garden Party will be on Saturday 18th August. Look forward to seeing you all there.

Congratulations to staff who have achieved their NVQ’s.

NVQ2: Linda & Charity NVQ3: Linet, Evelyn & Trish. NVQ4: Louise Carr.

Forthcoming Events at the Homes

Benslow Nursing Home

Summer Fete in August

Highbury Rise

Hitchin Band 7 July

Church Farm 10 July

Afternoon Tea at Benslow Music Trust

1st Monday each month

Chiltern View

Bollywood themed night

7th July, 5pm onward

Evening Ball

Dates to be advised.

Robin Hood House

Trip to Whipsnade Zoo at the end of July


18th August 2012.

August 3, 2011

Stop Press – Latest News July 2011

Hertfordshire Care Provider’s Association Care Awards 2011

Activities organiser of the year finalist and winner was Katie Beaver who works at our Robin Hood House Home in Little Gaddesden. Max Clifford with Katie Beaver and our Nurse of the Year finalist, Bennilyn Azurin who works at our Benslow Nursing Home in Hitchin.

Contact us: 01442 825 919