In this unsettling time of social distancing and lockdown, we have been overwhelmed by the way the local community has reached out to our residents with unwavering kindness and generosity.

Our much-cherished residents here at Alderwood have received so many letters and gifts from local children and relatives alike to let them know that, even though they are apart, they are not alone. It brought so much joy to us all when we received incredible artwork by the school children who usually visit and read to us, and we have spent hours writing heartfelt letters of thanks back to them!

As well as these artistic gifts, we’ve been sent plants and flowers from the British Garden Centre in Stanway and Dilly’s Florist in Colchester. We’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity of donations from local businesses who have gifted us many wonderful surprises for our residents to enjoy! We’ve had donations of chocolates and flowers from family members, as well as a hilarious hand-made ‘loo roll’ cake! We received Indian takeaways from our local restaurant, sanitisers and gloves donated by Thomas Lord Audley school, Easter eggs from the Colchester Anti-loo Roll Brigade – we even had an Echo Dot Smart Speaker from our friend of Alderwood, Fay. We were also lucky to receive some colourful, hand-made artwork for our home from one of our grandson’s, John, while Carole knitted some adorable teddy bears for the residents.

It has been these gestures, from local friends and companies alike, as well as letters of encouragement, that have truly touched us; the effort the community has gone to, to stay connected and let our residents know they are still a much-loved part of this neighbourhood, has strengthened our bond even tighter than ever.

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