It was an honour to have Mayor of Gateshead Allison Ilderton-Thompson visit us at Eighton Lodge where herself and Jim, her driver, enjoyed the hospitality in our new coffee lounge.

“They are the best scones I’ve tasted! What’s in them?” is a common review of Christine, our cooks scones with orange zest. They are delicious!

Jim, Protector of the Chains, had visited in the past but barely recognised Eighton Lodge after its dramatic transformation. They both commented on the woodland walk walls to stimulate conversations, how light the home was and adored the beautiful photography throughout the lounges by Paul Stevenson of local landmarks presented in his unique vivid style.

“You could almost walk into that picture and the one with the bees and the flowers is breath-taking.” exclaimed the Mayor.

Allison has a keen interest in all things community hailing from Dunston and was impressed with the home’s strong links with Trevor and all at the Life Centre at Teams, local sheltered accommodation and the Alzheimer’s Society. She also commented on the Wellburn Dear Dementia campaign she had seen in Newcastle.

This wasn’t a whistle-stop visit as they both took time to enjoy long one to one conversations with many of the residents for well over an hour.

There are plans to involve the community more in the future and for Eighton Lodge to be involved in a Dementia Awareness gallery at Gateshead Council Head Office in the coming months.

The Mayor left realising that VIP treatment is our default setting at Eighton Lodge and that the door will always be open to our friends in the local community.

Helen Lawson