Reunited again

Childhood friends Ken Thurlow and Norman Hewitson have been reunited again at Roseleigh care home and now have rooms opposite each other in the home!

Ken was the first to move to Roseleigh in February and when Norman also realised that he would benefit from residential care; there was only one place it could be – with his ‘old mate.’

The pair grew up in the Brambles Farm area of Middlesbrough and were in the same class together at school, enjoying playing football and doing all the other things that children of their time did back then.

Ken was so good at football that he signed on schoolboy terms for Stoke City Football Club, playing a handful of games professionally for them before he was released and returned home to Middlesbrough.

Norman’s father worked as an engineer, so he got them both apprenticeships working in the steelworks, Norman serving his time as a Steam Blower and Ken as a Plater.

The pair were separated when they were called up for National Service, Norman going to Germany and Ken to Cyprus.

The friends both got married and although Norman sadly became widowed, Ken had a very happy marriage to his childhood sweetheart Maureen whom he met aged 14 when they were on a school camp together.

As Ken was from Middlesbrough and Maureen lived in Gateshead they would meet halfway in Durham each week, often, going to the movies.

Maureen unfortunately passed away in 2014 but the couple have three children, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Ken’s daughter Julie was Ken’s main carer until her own medical problems made this difficult and so he went to live in Roseleigh where he settled immediately.

Julie explains: “I used to take Dad to a tea dance and at one of these events, residents from Roseleigh were there with members of staff.

“When I realised Dad needed full-time residential care, I knew it had to be Roseleigh and I could not be happier with the home. The staff are lovely and always go the extra mile.”

Julie says Norman also moving to Roseleigh has been further beneficial for Ken.

She adds: “Dad has early-stage dementia but loves to talk about the past and Norman has a great memory so he can speak to Dad about their childhood, which is great therapy for him.

“I already thought Roseleigh was fantastic but it’s even better that Norman and Dad are together again there.”

Norman also agrees: “I visited Ken a few times when he first came to Roseleigh so when it came time to choosing a home for myself, I knew it had to be Roseleigh.

“The staff are very good, and I couldn’t be anywhere better, especially with old mate Ken with me as well.”

Why Choose Constantia Healthcare?

Residential & Nursing Care

Providing a homely, safe and secure environment for your loved ones

Respite & Day Care

Looking after your loved ones while you have a well-earned rest and break

Alzheimers & Dementia Care

Specialist care for people with complex needs at Roseleigh in Middlesbrough

Varied Activity Programme

Stimulating body and mind with an ever-changing schedule