News at Cumnor Hill House in Oxfordshire


Getting our groove on in a unique way
On Thursday 1st August, we held a completely different kind of event for our residents, their friends and family members – you’ll never guess what it was…

A silent disco!

If you’re not familiar with the concept, a silent disco is where people dance to music that they’re listening to through headphones rather than using a speaker system. It’s great fun and it’s hilarious watching people dance when you can’t hear the music!

We called in the experts from the Silent Disco Company, the UK’s leading LED Silent Disco Hire Company. They brought state-of-the-art LED wireless headphones with them, and people taking part had an absolute blast.

Everyone was dancing along to a wide variety of songs, with hits from various decades being played on their headphones. Some people were sitting down but got their arms in the air when their favourite songs played. It was a joy to see everyone having so much fun.

Thank you to the Silent Disco Company for such a great event – everyone had a great time! Who knows, maybe we’ll be able to hold another silent disco in the future.

Keep an eye out for our upcoming events by following us on Facebook.

Cumnor Hill House British Summer Party
Last Saturday, we held another spectacular summer party here at Cumnor Hill House care home in Oxfordshire, complete with donkey rides, a Punch and Judy show, singers and more! While the weather was not entirely with us, everyone had a great time.

We capped our day off with our fantastic raffle prize draw, featuring all sorts of wonderful prizes from Aldi, Pets at Home, Mobile Genie and many more local and national brands.

If you came along, we hope you managed to win something nice! Thanks to everyone who came along and joined in the fun. 

Mod-cons and top technology in our Cumnor care home
Having all sorts of technology at our fingertips is something we can often take for granted in our day-to-day lives, and you’d be forgiven for thinking that members of the older generation aren’t always overly familiar with all the technology available in the modern day – but here at Cumnor Hill House, residents benefit from some of the latest technology. And it really does make a difference to what life is like here.

What technology do we have in our care home?

Well, where to start?! We have top-of-the-range Sonos speakers in all our shared spaces and these are connected by Wi-Fi to iPads. The Sonos speakers are installed in the walls to help create an inbuilt, integrated sound system, and using Sonos app on the iPads, residents can choose the music they’d like playing in each communal room at the touch of a button.

We also have a few other iPads floating around for people to use, which make it easy to surf the web – they are also great for playing games like scrabble and doing crosswords as they offer the ability to zoom right in and enlarge letters and numbers. The iPads also have Skype and FaceTime, so residents can speak to friends and family members no matter where they are in the world – we even have people who love taking selfies!

Virtual reality is a wonderful thing and we use it here in our CQC-rated ‘Outstanding’ care home in Cumnor to assist residents who struggle to travel. It allows them to be transported to the beach, to go for a thrilling ride on a rollercoaster, see the Big Smoke from the London Eye, to go swimming with dolphins… the choices are out of this world, and our residents can experience them all from the comfort of our home.

How does it make Cumnor Hill House care home a great place to live?

Our iPad-controlled Sonos speakers promote choice – they let residents listen to the music they like, so they’re not stuck with the same songs on the local radio station day in, day out. Able to stream music through Spotify, the musical world is our residents’ oyster.

With other iPads available for use, we’ve opened all sorts of doors for our residents, who can play games whenever they’d like to, stay in touch with friends and family more easily and learn new things – after all, we never stop learning.

Virtual reality is simply amazing. It provides our residents here at Cumnor Hill House with a valuable added source of engagement and stimulation. It has been proven to help entice those living with dementia to interact more, and they’re free to try out new things in a safe environment.

If you’d like to find out more about the wide range of technology we use here in our care home in Cumnor, please pop in and speak to a member of the team. And we’re always open to new ideas, so please do make suggestions if you think of anything that could enhance our offering!

Fishing at Bibury Trout Farm
We’ve had many amazing trips to plenty of places this summer, but one of our favourites was when we took some of our residents fishing at Bibury Trout Farm last week! They were incredibly successful, with one individual catching four trout within an hour – it was fantastic. We brought the caught fish home and our brilliant kitchen team prepared them for everyone to eat. You can’t get much fresher than that!

Pen pal letters and charity bike rides
We recently launched a new pan pal scheme with our sister care home near Reading, Shinfield View. It’s always great to make new friends, so our residents were really keen on the idea!

We decided to launch this new scheme in style, so Alan – our wonderful Events Manager – hand-delivered the letters last week, travelling from Cumnor Hill House in Oxfordshire to Shinfield View by bike! And that’s of the push variety, not motor...

Alan cycled from Oxford to Reading and Andover and on to Stonehenge and Avebury, travelling over 150 miles to deliver the letters – and he also transported the replies with him back to Cumnor Hill House! He did it all in the name of charity.

The bike ride was part of our fundraising campaign to help Connie get the treatment she so desperately needs for her spinal muscular atrophy. We’re still fundraising, so it’s not too late to donate! Speak to a member of the Cumnor Hill House team if you’d like to contribute to help Connie.

A great big party and some wonderful paintings, all thanks to Joyce
We love a good party at Cumnor Hill House, so when one of our residents had a big birthday, we couldn’t think of a better excuse!Joyce recently celebrated her 90th birthday, and we were delighted to be able to host 70 family members and friends from across the UK, including Joyce’s children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Some of them even travelled from as far as the Scottish Highlands!

We pulled out all the stops to make Joyce’s birthday celebrations as fantastic as possible, maintaining the luxury standard we take great pride in here at Cumnor Hill House; we created some amazing food in the kitchen and our hospitality team provided top-class service. Joyce’s birthday cake was incredible!

There’s something you may not know about Joyce…she’s a brilliant artist and has painted some beautiful watercolours in our art classes. So good, in fact, that her grandson had a handful of them printed onto canvas and stretched over wooden frames – they’re now on display around our Oxfordshire care home!

Thank you to Joyce and her family for a wonderful birthday party and for filling Cumnor Hill House with lovely art.

We’re serious about wellbeing – and that’s why we’d like to introduce Di to the team
We’re delighted to welcome Di O’Meara to the team as our Holistic and Wellness Lead here at Cumnor Hill House care home, and she brings with her a wealth of experience in health, fitness and wellbeing.

Health and Wellness Lead is a brand-new role here in our CQC-rated ‘Outstanding’ Oxfordshire care home, and it has been created to enhance our team and our home’s offering. We anticipate it will bring breadth and depth to the existing environment of personal comfort and attention to detail at Cumnor Hill House. Once she’s up and running in her new role, Di will be around to offer support to residents, their family members and staff as well, so be sure to say hello.

Having Di on board will really refine how things work around our home when it comes to wellbeing, as she is very focused on health and happiness, and enjoys working as part of a team that can facilitate and support people in their goals. We already take the wellbeing of residents incredibly seriously, and we do everything we can to make the lives of people who call Cumnor Hill House their home as fun and fulfilling as possible, building healthier lives. Having Di here will hopefully only improve our overall care and the atmosphere in our home.

Next time you come and see us here at Cumnor Hill House, please do have a chat with Di if she’s around. We’re sure you’ll be seeing lots of her going forward! And if you have any questions about Di’s role here in our home, please don’t hesitate to speak to Di herself or Louise, our home manager.

Let’s see how much better life can be by taking care of our wellbeing a bit more! And that includes you.

Find out how Di’s career brought her to Cumnor Hill House:

“I initially trained as a radiographer, working in both NHS and private hospitals over the years. I enjoyed all the different fields of work including imaging in cardiology, breast cancer services, the community hospital and training and mentoring radiography students. I also trained as a fitness instructor in the 1990s and enjoyed teaching classes of all abilities, maintaining my own health and fitness along the way!

After retiring from the health service, I retrained as a bereavement volunteer for Cruse Bereavement Care, where I have now been volunteering for two years, gaining experience in working with clients one-to-one, working in small supervision groups and as a member of the 'Client Services and Training Committee'. This service is one that I have respected and had an interest in for many years following personal bereavements.

I have had wonderful opportunities for study throughout my life (including taking a first-class degree as a mature student from Durham University) and feel confident that I have the academic and intellectual strength to fulfil the expectations of this newly created post. I hope that it may also be enriched by further learning and application.

I hold Durham University postgraduate counselling certificates that have provided a skills-based foundation for working effectively in person-centred roles, and I also have experience mentoring students at Van Mildert College and bereavement counselling in the community.

My work in the health service, the fitness world, mentoring and Cruse has given me experience with a wide range of people, and I look forward to joining forces with Charlie the beauty therapist, Dot the personal trainer and Sue the physiotherapist at Cumnor Hill House to help and assist in delivering this aspect of holistic care in every way I can.

The aim of ‘living well’ can be a mantra for all, and this is an aspect I hope to expand and enrich for fulfilling lives for all of us.”

August Events at Cumnor Hill House
Well, do we have an exciting August lined up for you! And we’re not wasting any time getting started, as our first event is on Thursday 1st, and we’re kicking things off with a Silent Disco! This is something we’ve never done before here at Cumnor Hill House, but we wanted to give it a go, as it means everyone can listen to the music they’d like to dance to and boogie on down together. It’s sure to be great fun!

A week later on 8th August, we’re welcoming Miss Jones into our Oxfordshire care home, and she’ll be here to dazzle us with her wonderful voice as she sings all sorts of vintage songs for us. On Thursday 15th August, Titine La Voix is coming back to our Outstanding home once again to entertain everyone with her engaging performance.

Towards the end of the month, the standard of entertainment here in our home isn’t slipping at all, and we’re hosting an evening of magic on 22nd August! Magic Steve will be here to get you thinking about how he performs his tricks. This is such a great interactive performance and one that really gets people talking. We’re rounding off the month with a visit from Pippa and Buddy, the talented dog-and-owner duo of Britain’s Got Talent fame! This is a barking mad act that you won’t want to miss.

All our events this August will start with complimentary refreshments at 6:30pm, followed by first-rate entertainment at 7pm. Food options are subject to change. We really hope you can join us; please don’t forget to RSVP to or 01865 415185.


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