Fakenham home marks 50 years of care in community

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham
Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham
Three generations of the same family have been employed at Cranmer House, LtoR, Janet Bidewell, Margaret Rawling, Ria Bidewell ANL-160928-143231009
Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham Three generations of the same family have been employed at Cranmer House, LtoR, Janet Bidewell, Margaret Rawling, Ria Bidewell ANL-160928-143231009

A care home in Fakenham has celebrated 50 years since it opened with tea, cake, singing and dancing.

Members of staff, clients, and former workers came together at Cranmer House last Wednesday to mark the special anniversary.

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham
Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham
Former employees, LtoR, Kathleen Parker, Margaret Rawling, Maureen Harboard ANL-160928-143244009

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham Former employees, LtoR, Kathleen Parker, Margaret Rawling, Maureen Harboard ANL-160928-143244009

On the day the celebrations were combined with a coffee morning to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support, during which the home raised a total of £700 for the charity.

Manager Kirsty Sleightholme said: “It was a really nice day of interaction within the community, which is what a lot of it was about as well. It was a way of throwing open our doors really.”

A day full of activities at the home included live music and a cream tea for guests.

The day also saw a number of people return to their old workplace to join in with the festivities.

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham
Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham
GV of the building as it is today ANL-160928-143058009

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham GV of the building as it is today ANL-160928-143058009

Kathleen Parker, Maureen Harboard and Margaret Rawling are three such people, who worked at the home in its early days.

Mrs Rawling has a special relationship with Cranmer House, as along with her daughter Janet Bidewell (deputy manager) and granddaughter Ria Bidewell (support worker), she is one of three generations to have worked at the home.

Mrs Rawling came to Cranmer House as a care assistant 30 years ago and retired in 1997 when she was acting manager.

It comes as chairwoman of Friends of Cranmer House Gilly Foortse said there were “green shoots of hope” that beds at the home, which were said to be at risk earlier in the year, could now be saved.

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham
Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham
Raising money for Macmillan, LtoR, Kirsty Sleightholme (manager), Serena Ward, Heather Pawley ANL-160928-143151009

Cranmer House Residential Care Home, Norwich Road, Fakenham Holding a Macmillan coffee Morning and Celebrating 50 years in Fakenham Raising money for Macmillan, LtoR, Kirsty Sleightholme (manager), Serena Ward, Heather Pawley ANL-160928-143151009

It was reported in April that health officials were reviewing the use of beds at the home and were considering replacing them with a service where teams care for people in their own homes.

Mrs Foortse said the Friends of Cranmer House group were still working hard to make sure that the beds are saved.

She described Cranmer House as an important service to those in West Norfolk.