A dementia specialist care village in Newcastle-under-Lyme is hosting an open week showcasing a pioneering approach to living in care environments.

From 27th to 1st July, Belong on Lower Street will welcome visitors for an insight into the ‘village living’ model where customers can choose to live in independent apartments or as part of small ‘household’ cohorts with 24-hour support and nursing care available. The vibrant hub of onsite amenities are designed to promote positive wellbeing and an active later life for older people, including those who are living with dementia.

Guided tours will take place providing the chance to see the variety of facilities available to its customers and those living locally, including a Bistro, hair salon, therapy room, specialist gym and entertainment venue. The integrated Belong Heritage Gallery will also be open for viewings, featuring a reminiscence room documenting the town’s rich history, and experiences replicated from the Grade II listed building’s past, including Samuel Bell’s tea room and the Old Pomona Inn.

Guests will have the chance to meet-and-greet the management team who can also advise on the services available, such as activities provision and day care, known as ‘Experience Days’, Belong at Home domiciliary care, as well as recruitment and training opportunities for those who are interested.

Special events throughout the week include a craft fair featuring handmade items crafted by the residents (Wednesday 29 June 10am – 2pm), and a choir performance from pupils from St Mary’s Catholic Primary School (Thursday 30 June, 2pm). Free health checks from the village nurse and a dementia care advice stall will also be available throughout Thursday.

The open week has been inspired as part of Care Home Open Week, a national event affording communities the chance to connect with their local care providers. This year’s observance is the first in-person event in three years, owing to the pandemic. To add to the event’s proceedings, guests can take advantage of a buy one, get one free offer for all coffee and cake purchases in the onsite Bistro.

Peter Norman, general manager at Belong Newcastle-under-Lyme said: “We’re very excited for our open week. Our village centre is always open to the general public and we’re pleased to be part of this special event that celebrates care environments for being a great place to live and work. There’s no need for guests to book, they can come along and I’m sure they will be pleasantly surprised when they see everything we have to offer.”

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