Our team | Abney Court care home in Cheadle, Cheshire | Care UK
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Abney Court care home in Cheadle, Cheshire

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our-team

Helen Parry

Home Manager

I joined Care UK in August 2019 – I was keen to work here as the organisation offers an incredible level of support to residents, families and colleagues.

I’ve worked in older people’s care for around thirty years, and I gained my first manager’s post in 2000. Before joining the team at Abney Court I managed a smaller care home in Stockport. I feel very privileged to be leading a great team that’s ensuring quality of care for older people.

I love how every day is different at Abney Court, and there’s always something new to learn about the people we care for. The morning’s the best time, it’s when I do my walk around and I have the chance to speak with residents and colleagues. Mid morning is the time to catch up with families and visitors in the coffee shop.

In my spare time I enjoy reading, seeing family, walking and swimming. My son lives in Australia with his family, so, when I can, I travel ‘down under’ to see them too.

Pam Wilson

Customer relations manager

From leaving college I worked in travel, which I loved, (I still like to travel) and I later changed direction and worked as an area manager for a blinds company.  In all my roles customer service and service delivery has been at the forefront of everything I do.

To do this role well you need to have a warm personality, and be confident, organised and a supremo plate spinner!  Moving a loved one into a care home is a very emotional experience for families so empathy is a must – as is a keenness to make everything as stress-free as possible. I love seeing family members finally relaxing and being able to breathe again. That’s when I know they have total trust in us. 

It’s been amazing to have been at Abney Court from the beginning, and seeing how it has developed. Our team has worked together brilliantly to build the reputation of the home, so that it’s now recognised as one of the best care homes in the Stockport area.

Steve Dale

Head chef

I joined Abney Court in February 2017, and before I came here I was the head chef of a catering company, working in five star venues across the UK. I’ve cooked for HM the Queen and even ran the main hospitality kitchen at the London 2012 Olympic Games, catering for over 6,000 people, including heads of state and VIPs, over six weeks.

I wanted a change of sector as I was keen to establish a work/life balance. Care UK is very family-friendly: I like the ethos of the company and the positive impact the team has on residents’ lives.

I’m enjoying the fact that every day brings a new challenge at Abney Court, and I’m relishing making each resident’s dining experience individual – helping them to feel like a VIP.

Patricia Sh'Barnett

Unit manager

I knew that Abney Court was the place for me when the first two people I met here were very bubbly and fun. I have the same sort of personality so I knew I’d fit in!

My role involves doing assessments of potential new residents, so I’m meeting new people and being an ambassador for Abney Court all the time. I pride myself on understanding my colleagues’ roles within the home so that I can give them the support they need to do their jobs well.

I love being part of the team that’s helping residents to lead a fulfilling life full of activities and fun – that’s ultimately what we’re all about – making a difference to their lives. And I try to make time to sit and chat to residents whenever I can.  

Deborah Gebel

Business administrator

I joined Care UK and Abney Court in 2016 – I’d initially seen the home’s website and was surprised at how fantastic it looked. I knew I’d be happy working here and I am – I work with some lovely people.

Before I joined the Abney Court team I spent four years working in another care home company, first as an administrator, then as PA in the operations team. It was there that I got a good understanding of how a care home operates and where I developed a passion for working in care – it’s hugely rewarding.

Much of my spare time is taken up with family genealogy. Over the last twenty years I’ve gone back hundreds of years in my family tree. I can prove that I’m related to King Edward I (but probably a lot of people can!). I’m also related to the Davenports of Bramall Hall, and, through them, to an American ex-president. And that’s all on my mother’s side. I’m tackling my dad’s side next!

Marina McHugh

head housekeeper

I’ve been at Abney Court since 2016, and I was proud to be promoted to head housekeeper after less than a year here. Care UK’s ethics and values are very similar to my own, so I felt at home instantly here. 

I love that no two days are ever the same at Abney Court – there’s always a fresh challenge or something happening in the home. I love engaging with residents and their families, as well as my own colleagues and I’m passionate about ensuring that residents’ needs are met to the best of my – and my team’s – ability. 

Here at Abney Court, the housekeeping team is very much a part of the larger home team. The home team is very closely-knit. We all get involved in the different events that the home puts on. In fact, my team performed a show as part of our summer fayre. I had a solo, which was completely out of my comfort zone!

Leon Harney

maintenance

I’m an experienced maintenance manager and my last role was in a care setting too. I joined Abney Court in 2017 because it was a new and prestigious home and, being part of Care UK, was part of a respected care provider. I was keen to extend my skills and technical knowledge, so it fitted the bill. 

Every day’s different here, and there’s always something new to learn about residents and their lives, and new skills for me to develop. I really enjoy interacting with residents and helping to sort out their practical issues. 

It’s important to be able to juggle different tasks in this role, and to be proactive about solving problems. Things can get very busy and pressured at times in a large home like this, but we work well as a team here at Abney Court to achieve each goal. In fact, the team is one of the highlights of this role for me.

Geraldine (Gee) Clarkson

lifestyle lead

I’ve worked in the community and care home sector as an activities/lifestyle coordinator for many years and I joined Abney Court in 2015 when it was a new home. 

I have a degree in art, and am a qualified teacher in adult education. It’s a helpful background to have. In this role it’s also important to be adaptable and versatile, as well as a good listener. A good sense of humour is key as well, and you need to be willing to make a fool of yourself. I love seeing residents enjoying themselves. It’s then that I know I’ve done a good job. 

There’s always more to discover about our residents at Abney Court. It’s a privilege to listen to their stories and learn about the lives they’ve lived and the adventures they’ve had. I’ve learnt a huge amount from them. 

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