Our team | Ambleside care home in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire | Care UK
Care UK

Ambleside care home in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire

Care UK

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Julia Joy

Home manager

I’m a registered nurse and I used to work in hospitals. However, I’ve been a care home manager since 2000. It was the best move for me – I find working in care homes far more satisfying. 

I used to work for Care UK and was keen to rejoin the organisation: it strives to deliver the highest quality care, dignity and respect for residents. As a company it is also very supportive of its colleagues.

I love talking to residents, learning about their lives and meeting their families. I have a fantastic team here and I enjoy chatting to colleagues: they help and support me to do my job and they have some superb ideas about how we can improve residents’ lives, and make Ambleside a wonderful place to live. 

Donna Wakelam

deputy manager

I’ve worked in care home management for about 20 years – before joining Care UK I worked in the same small care home company for 17 years. I joined Care UK as clinical lead at Ambleside before being promoted to deputy manager. 

I enjoy the walk around the home that I always do first thing in the morning. I catch up with colleagues and say hello to residents; I’ll try to have a cup of tea with them and see how they are. My aim is always to treat every person with dignity and respect, just as I myself would want to be treated. 

One of the things I’m proudest of in my career is completing my Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care, which I did while working full time and looking after my family. Working in social care certainly teaches you how to juggle multiple tasks!

Frankie Brennan

customer relations manager

My background is in hospitality and events (I won an award for customer service excellence in the South West Tourism Awards).

My role is very varied, which is what’s so great about it, and I love all aspects of it –getting to know the residents and their families and showing prospective residents and their families around the home. It’s a beautiful home with a great team.

Outside of work I love cooking and eating out, socialising with friends and going for walks in the beautiful Warwickshire or Worcestershire countryside. 

Wendy Fojtik

lifestyle lead

I’ve worked at Ambleside before but had some time away working for a charity and then running my own business. When I saw this role, I knew that my nursing knowledge and previous experience would be transferable, so I applied.

I’m passionate about helping residents to enjoy the lifestyle they want – choice is all-important. Every day is rewarding, and every day is different because helping so many different people to enjoy meaningful activities keeps me on my toes! But I love it when an activity has gone well and residents are talking about it.

In my spare time I volunteer at a local Brownie group. It’s great fun working with a different generation – I’ve been doing it for over ten years.  

Amy Wilson

unit lead

I joined Care UK in 2013 as a carer, at Ambleside and then moved up to become a team leader.  After a lot of hard work, having gained my BTEC HND in Health and Social Care level 3, I finally moved into my current position of Unit Lead.
Having previously worked as a support worker for young adults with multiple and profound learning difficulties I have a lot of experience in caring and communicating with people.  
My role requires good empathy skills and the ability to listen to people, qualities of which I have by the bucket load - and it also helps to be able to make a good cup of tea!    My favourite part of the working day is talking to the residents and their families – spending quality time with them chatting about their lives and their day. 
Ambleside feels like one big family, we all work together as a team and are passionate about providing the best care that we can. In my spare time, I love to cook, but I also like to eat out as well; I also enjoy travelling and going on holiday. 

Tomasz Milewski

head chef

My background includes working as a chef in care homes as well as in the restaurant and hotel trade. I was keen to join Care UK because it has a good reputation for high standards in all areas. 

I enjoy coming in to the kitchen in the morning and making a plan for the day ahead, and getting started with preparations. That’s my favourite part of the day. We have residents with a range of different dietary needs, so it’s important to give them tasty and nutritious dishes tailored to their individual requirements. It’s a challenge, but very rewarding when you receive good feedback from them. 

I haven’t been at Ambleside long – I started in 2018 – but I’m looking forward to making a positive difference to residents’ lives through my work as the head chef here. 

Sharron Makepeace-Lane

business administrator

I used to run a cash office for two large supermarkets, as well as my own family business for many years. When this role came up and a friend, who works here, suggested I’d be good at it, I thought I’d give it a go. I was delighted to discover I’d got the job as I wasn’t sure I had the right qualifications.

I like getting in first thing in the morning and seeing what needs doing, as you never know what each day will bring – I enjoy the variety that brings. While the challenges can be different each day, being a good listener and being determined to solve problems is something that you always need. What I’m also really enjoying is having the chance to get to know the residents.

Sharon Braithwaite

head housekeeper

I used to work in hotels before moving to the care sector. While you meet lots of different people in the hotel industry, I really enjoy working for residents, talking to them and their families, and helping to make every day that little bit easier or more special if I can. It’s more interesting than hotel work.

There’s quite a lot to being a head housekeeper – looking after the housekeeping team and ensuring everything runs smoothly, and there’s a fair bit of paperwork. Recruiting new colleagues is also part of what I do.

When I’m not at work I like to relax by walking the dog and enjoying some retail therapy with my daughter!

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