Anchors Aweigh: How a Care Home Made an Elderly Sailor's Dream Come True
Resident David Bickle and Wellbeing Coordinator Tracy Graham

Maritime aficionado, David Bickle, a resident of HC-One’s Greenways Court care home in Consett, County Durham, voiced his desire to experience life at sea once more.

In response, his dedicated colleagues went above and beyond, arranging a visit for him to the Port of Tyne.

At 86 years old, David, who has called Greenways Court his home since August 2022, harbours a deep-seated love for ships and the seafaring world, a passion cultivated over many years spent working as an engineer. His extensive knowledge and captivating tales are a source of endless fascination for the staff at the care home.

Wellbeing Coordinator, Tracy Graham, was discussing upcoming activities at the home with David, something he often loves to get involved with, when he remarked:

“The only thing I would like to do is to get on a ship again.”

After a few calls and a face-to-face meeting with the Royal Quays, Port of Tyne, David’s dream day out was planned!

On the 28th of February 2024, accompanied by colleagues, David arrived at the Royal Quays, located in the Port of Tyne, which provides activities such as sailing, motorboating and sea angling.

The tour around the harbour was a wonderful experience for David and he was shown all the harbour workings, he had lots of questions about the boats, water capacity and how they are dry docked.

At the end of the tour, David was thrilled when he was asked if he would like to open the 150-year-old gates on the dock. David climbed two flights of stairs and he was at the top in no time!

David returned home with a huge smile on his face. He exclaimed:

“Thank you so much I had an amazing day, and it’s not even my birthday.”

Michelle Bull, Care Manager at Greenways Court, said:

“When David returned, he had the biggest smile and told me the day had better than his birthday. Seeing the impact this had for David is what makes it all worthwhile.
“We always strive to enhance the lives of our residents and ensuring all their wishes come true, I am proud of the team for making this happen.”

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