News at Cumnor Hill House in Oxfordshire


February Events at Cumnor Hill House
February’s going to be a brilliant month here at Cumnor Hill House, with four fantastic events coming up. We’re starting the month off with a newcomer in our midst, as we host Swing Hour with Wayne – Wayne is known for his 1960s and ’70s swing set, so we’re looking forward to finding out what great hits he has up his sleeve. Our next event is a Valentine’s Day Special, with Titine La Voix, who will most certainly give us a romantic evening to remember.

We’re then welcoming Mike Emblow into our home, a versatile vocalist who sings big band, jazz combos and more, taking influence from all sorts of big names to create an extensive repertoire. To finish off the month with a bang, we’ve managed to line up a visit from Brian Slade! Brian has been in many bands over the years and has even been on Top of the Pops - it’s time to go back to the swinging ’60s!

All events will start with refreshments at 6:30pm followed by the main event at 7pm – if you would like to join us, please RSVP to or 01865 415185. It would be great to see you here at Cumnor Hill House.

January Events at Cumnor Hill House
This month, we have not four but five fabulous events for you to come along to! We’re kicking off 2019 on Thursday 3rd January with an Elvis Presley tribute act, so get ready to dance the night away. The following week, we’re welcoming Rhythm 2 Keys, a unique duo who we’re really excited about seeing. On 17th January, Paul Dumas is coming back by popular demand and will be entertaining us for the evening.

On 24th January, we’re delighted to be welcoming back the wonderful Jacqueline Maynard – it’s not every day you see an X Factor contestant here in our home. Rounding off the month, we’re delighted to have Jenny Sinclair here, who is one of the UK’s top Karen Carpenter tribute acts.

We hope to see you this month here at Cumnor Hill House, and if you are coming along to any of the above events, please be sure to RSVP by emailing or calling 01865 415 185. Happy New Year!

Winter care all wrapped up at Cumnor Hill House
Find the ideal gift this winter, with short-term care for your loved one

Make this Christmas one to remember, with quality time with friends and family, not a thing to worry about and complete peace of mind that your loved one is safe and well – here at Cumnor Hill House, we know that this isn’t possible for everyone. That’s why we’re here to help with short-term care in our home this winter.

If you provide care for a member of your family or a close friend, it’s important to take the time to recharge your batteries too, and short-term care at Cumnor Hill House this winter allows you to do that, while still giving you that all-important peace of mind that your loved one is well-cared-for. We don’t just offer care either, our home is all-inclusive, so as part and parcel of your loved one’s stay, they can benefit from our high-quality meals, first-class entertainment and brilliant events and outings, as well as all our outstanding facilities, all for one simple weekly fee with no extra costs.

Choosing care for your loved one is a big decision, but visiting our comfortable, luxurious home in Oxfordshire will reassure you that you couldn’t make a better choice for your loved one; whether they stay for a week or a month, they can benefit from high-quality, all-inclusive, person-centred care in a safe and secure environment. We’re here to provide a home from home with a focus on wellbeing for as long as you and your loved one need it.

We have limited beds available, so if respite care at Cumnor Hill House is something you’re considering for your loved one, get in touch, arrange a time to come and see us, and experience our wonderful home for yourself. At Cumnor Hill House, we have winter care all wrapped up.

December Events at Cumnor Hill House
You’re in for a real treat this Christmas at Cumnor Hill House, as we have four fantastic events lined up for you all in December. We’re starting our countdown to Christmas with the one and only Gemma Louise Doyle, who is a firm favourite here in our home. The following week, we’ll be welcoming Miki Travis through our doors to perform magic tricks and more – Miki always has everyone smiling and laughing. On 20th December, we’re holding a Christmas Special Extended Evening to get us all feeling festive, then we’re rounding off the month with a night with Dave Dean, who will be singing Big Band hits for us all to sing and dance along to.

As always, our events are completely free of charge and include refreshments too. We really hope to see you in our home this December – the more, the merrier! To RSVP to any of our events this coming month, please email or call us on 01865 415 185.

Lift the Lid on Sex, Intimacy and Relationships
A while back, we were delighted to be approached by the Innovation Team at Alzheimer’s Society to take part in a completely new concept aimed to lift the lid on sex, intimacy and relationships. And we’re so glad we said yes as it has completely changed how we think.

What is it all about?

As its name suggests, ‘Lift the Lid’ aims to break taboo, with the needs and rights to sex, intimacy and relationships too often overlooked in the lives of people living in care homes. To do this, Alzheimer’s Society created a pioneering workshop in a box for care teams to use to get talking about the topic – and to encourage them to do something about it. At Cumnor Hill House, we did.

Where did the idea come from?

The innovation was jointly designed with input from a wide range of stakeholders, then prototyped and product-tested by care home teams across the sector, including us. We worked alongside Alzheimer’s Society, the National Dementia Care Awards 2018, Good Innovation, Bupa, Shinfield View and other care providers and research groups to trial this significant change in dementia care.

What does it involve?

Well, sex and intimacy in care homes is often seen as behaviour to be managed, rather than a human need with rights to be respected and supported. ‘Lift the Lid’ looks at how care home staff can become better-equipped and better supported in this area, enabling them to offer better support to residents and their partners when it comes to their relationship needs.

‘Lift the Lid’ involves audience-led innovative sprints that gather knowledge, actionable insights and creative solutions that are prototyped, adapted and widely adopted. The shared outcomes and process can then be used to help us to meet the needs of people affected by dementia.

The workshop for ‘Lift the Lid’ has been built on an innovation model to help improve dementia care, following a Learn, Investigate, Find and Experiment model, known as LIFE.

The Alzheimer’s Society’s workshop in a box includes all the tools needed for care homes to run their own creative workshop, which is exactly what we did at Cumnor Hill House. Its aim is to encourage staff to challenge perceptions around sex, intimate relationships and people affected by dementia, and to provide a framework for respectful management of in-the-moment situations. It also helps to align a shared set of values and actions for each care home involved.

‘Lift the Lid’ in our home

Louise Axtell, Home Manager here at Cumnor Hill House, said: ‘We’re proud to have been chosen as one of just a handful of care homes in the country to trial this innovative approach, and it was great to be part of such a pioneering project. It’s all about dignified care, and an understanding of intimacy and relationships are now an integral part of our care; the team here now has the understanding, ability and confidence to respond in an appropriate, respectful manner, not reacting out of embarrassment and fear.

Romance, sex and intimacy aren’t out of bounds in our home, as people may think they are. Your husband is still your husband, your wife is still your wife, and just because they’ve moved into our home doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have that same intimate relationship you always have done. Lift the Lid has opened our eyes and for that, we’re grateful.’

Please feel free to speak to a member of the team to find out more about 'Lift the Lid'.

November Events
With five Thursdays in November, that’s a whole lot of fun to look forward to at Cumnor Hill House – will you be joining us for one or more of our entertainment evenings? We've arranged a wide variety of fantastic events for this coming month, so our residents and guests are in for a real treat. It all starts off with fancy dress, so please get your glad rags on and get involved, as it’s sure to be great fun.

To RSVP to any of our five events this coming month, please email or call us on 01865 415 185. And remember, all our entertainment is completely free of charge, and our refreshments are too!

Meet Dorothy, our new Personal Trainer at Cumnor Hill House
Earlier this year, we became one of just a few care homes in the country to feature its very own gym, and on 1st June, it officially opened to the public. The Cumnor Hill House Gym was built with our residents’ health in mind, but by opening it up to the community completely free of charge, it has become a fantastic asset for the area and a facility we’re incredibly proud of.

As part of getting this specialist gym up and running, we recruited Dorothy, who is an adept personal trainer. Here’s an insight into what Dorothy does and how she helps our gym to run so smoothly.

How did you end up becoming a personal trainer?

I began personal training in 2011 when I realised that this was the perfect job for someone like me who is interested in people, fitness, and wellbeing. I discovered that helping people to plan and achieve levels of fitness and wellbeing that made them happier also made me happy!

Can you tell us a bit about your previous work experience and how that may help you in your new role?

I had various careers before becoming a personal trainer, including acting and modelling for Select Models UK, Latin America and Africa, and I also work as a make-up artist, sports masseuse, and development of expertise as a cardiac rehabilitation trainer, GP referral co-ordinator and nutritional adviser.

The key thread that runs through all of these is the way in which the human body can be helped to look or feel as good as possible. Sometimes this can be superficial, with modelling and make-up artistry being just surface changes. Of more interest to me now is how the inside of a person, and what they feel about themselves, can be related to how fit they are, especially as they grow older.

What would you say to locals considering using the gym?

Give us a try! We’ll do our best to make you feel welcome and, if you need it, we will help you to plan and achieve your fitness goals.

What made you want to come and work at Cumnor Hill House?

The variety of clients – both residents and other members of the local community – means that the work will be both challenging and rewarding. I look forward to helping both the young and young at heart to improve their fitness and, as a result, feel better about themselves.

What are you looking forward to most working at Cumnor Hill House?

I hope that I will see the residents and other members of the local community achieve goals beyond what they initially expected.

What will you be doing on a day-to-day basis?

My main focus, from day one, has been on working with residents on a one- to-one basis to personalise a programme that best meets each of their specific needs. There’s a whole lot more too, but I won’t bore you with the detail of the necessary administration that a gym needs to operate safely and effectively!

What do you find most rewarding about your job?

It sounds rather cheesy, but the most rewarding part of my job is seeing a client smile, even after I’ve worked them really hard! I feel a sense of achievement when someone I work with surpassed their own expectations.

How do you plan on working with other teams within the home?

There’s a careful screening process in place here at Cumnor Hill House, where I work with the medical staff to see which residents are well enough to exercise and at what level. From them on, every visit consists of speaking with nurses and carers to find out about any changes to the health of the residents that may affect their exercise plans, such as a change of medication or low energy levels.

I would like to monitor our residents’ eating habits and activity levels too, so I will be working closely with the events team and kitchen staff. We can look at ways to improve, share ideas and support each other, so that each resident can get the most out of each day.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

After spending most of my adult life engaged in individual and team sports, I realised that the key to a happy, healthy body and mind is an enjoyable whole-body workout combined with good nutrition. Five years ago, I decided to turn my personal interests into my career, becoming a PT, nutritional advisor and GP referral.

I feel truly blessed to have a career in which I make a genuine difference in people’s lives, whether it be helping people meet their fitness and weight goals or rehabilitating those recovering from injury or serious medical conditions such as depression, stroke or arthritis.

It is my passion to educate, empower and encourage my clients through each PT session by providing fun, enjoyable and rewarding exercise experiences that allow our bodies and minds to feel stronger – physically, emotionally and socially.

My motivation is my purest quality, I will go the extra mile and you will feel better after just one session! I hope to see you very soon at the Cumnor Hill House Gym.

October Events at Cumnor Hill House
We have four fantastic events in store for you this month, starting on Thursday 4th October with Cheryl King! Cheryl will be singing some of the old favourites as part of her Cockney Show - it's bound to be a night full of laughter and fun.

A week on Thursday, we're putting on Nelson's Irish Show, back by popular demand. This Irish-themed evening will not only have you singing along, but will get you up on your feet for a boogie as well. Don't forget your dancing shoes!

Following her fantastic performance at our Country and Western Party, Elkie is coming back to Cumnor Hill House on Thursday 18th October and will be putting on her Rock 'n' Roll show for us all to enjoy.

Last but not least, rounding off the month will be Anna McDonald with her party set on 25th, so get ready to be dazzled by her engaging performance and great vocals.

As always, our events are free of charge and include refreshments, too! If you would like to join us at one or more of our October events, please RSVP to or 01865 415 185 - we would love to see you there.

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