Right from the beginning, before we even started the design process, we knew exactly what we wanted to create – a place older people could truly call ‘home’. From the outset, its design would enable people to continue to live as independently as possible for as long as possible, and it would offer all the services and support they could ever want to maintain their quality of life.
However, life as we knew it changed dramatically when the lockdown rules came into force. Since mid-March, our community in Sidcup has been much more inward looking than usual, as we isolated together. We are blessed with our excellent chef, Spencer, who lived with us and kept us healthy with a balanced and varied diet.
Reduced contact with the outside world led us to take up new activities together from gardening to singing in the choir, playing boules in the garden, and enjoying the classic movies together.
This has been, without doubt, a difficult time for all. However, here within the Queensgate family, we feel privileged to have got through this together, blessed we are all healthy and happy, and ever grateful our ties to each other have become stronger.
Below our residents Therese, Beth and John share their experience of living at Queensgate Apartments and how the move is making a difference to their lives.
Honor Barratt, Managing Director
Therese had been thinking about moving into a retirement community since her husband died, and when her daughter told her she was moving away to Yorkshire to follow her lifelong dream, she knew she couldn’t delay any further. Read her story of how she beat the lockdown clock and observations on life in a time of Coronavirus from her new home at Queensgate Apartments....it’s so spacious and open, I love the gardens, so I opted for a bright two-bed apartment overlooking them and have seen the trees spring to leaf –it’s wonderful.
Dealing with an urgent change in your Mum’s circumstances is emotionally challenging at the best of times but tougher if you live in Dublin and can’t physically be there yourself because of lockdown travel restrictions.
“Everything changed when Mum had a bit of a nasty fall and had to go into hospital. And changed again, when hospital was deemed not to be the best place for her, as being elderly and unsteady on her feet as a result of the fall she was more vulnerable. So, Mum was discharged to a care home. Yet the emotional roller-coaster didn't stop there.”
“Before moving here, I was thinking of buying a Churchill apartment, but they were more than I wanted to pay. My daughter found some cheaper apartments but these were in converted houses, the last thing I wanted. Then I came across an advert for Queensgate Apartments so came here and had a chat with Nigel. I liked the idea of renting – it was something new to me. I’m rather comforted by the fact I’ve got money I can use just in case something happens which I wouldn’t have if I bought again. So, on that first day, I was happy to put my £1,000 deposit down and reserve the last one-bedroom place apartment overlooking the garden which I’m rather pleased about.
At Birchgrove, we design our communities to meet your needs in later life. You have the freedom to live
as you please in a quality self-contained apartment – without all the burdens of homeownership. Apartments and communal areas are future designed to anticipate changing needs as we age and central to that is our ethos of supporting you to remain active and lead life independently.
So if you are thinking of planning your next move, it would make sense to at least come and say hello and take a look.
These are challenging times, and everyone is understandably anxious about the risk of infection from COVID-19. I’d like to take this opportunity to both reassure you and explain more about the steps we’ve put in place to protect the health of everyone living, working or visiting Birchgrove. These will help us remain Covid-free.
All our sales advisors have completed online Coronavirus Awareness and Protection training. They are up to speed on all the latest prevention guidance, and measures are in place to minimise the risk of infection. All visitors will be provided with a face mask, hand sanitiser and gloves and a briefing to explain our safe working procedures. These go well above Government guidelines and are fortified from our own extensive experience.
We are open, so you can take a carefully supervised tour to get a taste of our beautiful apartments and life here. Booking is a must, as tours are planned to give us time to perform disinfection procedures in between.
We're here and we'd really like to help so get in touch.
Nigel Gale, Sales Manager - Queensgate Apartments, Sidcup
To help you through the daunting process of moving, we’ve partnered with hand-selected businesses to ensure your needs come first and hassle is minimised. We call this service Moveasy, and step-by-step it helps you with everything from access to independent financial advice, sorting through your belongings through to moving in on the big day and getting you settled in. All our partners adhere to the same safe working procedures and follow the same strict practices to keep you safe while supporting you on your move.
Once you move in, there will be a period of isolation – but you will be able to carry on with your life as normal, exactly as you do now. The difference will be us; the team here who will ensure you are safe, your needs looked after, and you are never isolated and alone.