Horley care home on a mission to save traditional hobbies and skills

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A care home in Horley has joined a nationwide campaign to save older hobbies from being forgotten. 

A poll of 2,000 adults carried out by Care UK, which operates Amherst House, on Court Lodge Road, found reading a map, using a compass and even simple handwriting are high within the top 50 list of lost talents – and a majority of those surveyed (77%) feel modern technology is the cause of traditional skills being lost. 

In a bid to prevent hobbies and skills from being lost over time and give them a new lease of life, Amherst House is encouraging locals to join a nationwide campaign to tap into thousands of older people’s expertise and knowledge – ‘Long Lost Hobbies’. As part of the initiative, residents across the UK are revisiting favourite hobbies from their younger years and sharing their skills with younger generations – with those living at Amherst House having the opportunity to join a gardening club or taking part in intergenerational activities regularly. 

In the South East especially, 68% of respondents think today’s generations aren’t interested in learning things like identifying plants and insects, sewing on a button or even spelling – while a further 54% said some old-fashioned skills simply aren’t needed anymore.

Cristina Cristea, General Manager at Amherst House, said: “Over time, many of us have become reliant on technology – meaning many hobbies that were once popular are now sadly being forgotten.

“This is why we’re excited to take part in the ‘Long Lost Hobbies’ initiative. Here at Amherst House, we know residents have a wealth of skills and hobbies that are now considered to be on the decline – and that is something we wanted to celebrate. 

“We’d like to encourage everyone in the Horley community to join us in our efforts to save old skills and hobbies by reaching out to their relatives or neighbours. We have so much to learn from older generations – and I’m sure they’d be more than happy to share all of their knowledge.”

As part of the survey, it also emerged that 17% of people polled in the South East think it will be just 10 to 12 years before they rely solely on technology to do things previously done without. Yet, 26% are still trying to keep certain skills and arts alive by teaching them to others.

Designed to enable residents to live active and fulfilled lives, while also promoting independence, Amherst House incorporates space for hobby and leisure activities. The building has been designed to help facilitate the creation of close-knit communities and encourage social interaction among the residents.

To find out more about Amherst House, please call Home Admissions Advisor, Terri Rowe on 01293735820, email horleypark.haa@gracewell.co.uk or visit: careuk.com/amherst-house.

For top tips on how you and your loved ones can revisit forgotten pastimes or discover new ones, please visit: careuk.com/long-lost-hobbies.



  1. Writing letters
  2. Map reading
  3. Knowing proper grammar
  4. Mental maths
  5. Remembering phone numbers
  6. Using a compass
  7. Handwriting
  8. Handwashing clothes
  9. Making a fire from scratch
  10. Stamp collecting
  11. Sewing/making clothes yourself 
  12. Spelling
  13. Wiring a plug yourself 
  14. Calligraphy
  15. Preserving food – such as pickling
  16. Sewing on a button yourself 
  17. Making your own jam
  18. Making your own cheese
  19. Tying knots
  20. Knitting
  21. Identifying different plants, trees or insects
  22. Changing a tire yourself 
  23. Making your own bread by hand
  24. Remembering addresses
  25. Using an index in a book
  26. Giving directions
  27. Remembering dates
  28. Reading music
  29. Carpentry
  30. Baking a cake by hand 
  31. Pottery making
  32. Storytelling
  33. Cooking something from memory
  34. Reading
  35. Putting up a shelf yourself 
  36. Critical thinking
  37. Time keeping
  38. Caring for chickens
  39. Speaking/learning another language
  40. Budgeting
  41. Creative writing
  42. Finding facts
  43. Following instructions
  44. Caring for plants
  45. Gardening
  46. Following a recipe
  47. Drawing
  48. Fishing
  49. Taking photos
  50. Editing photos yourself
Open to new residents

287 Court Lodge Road, Horley, Surrey, RH6 8RG

Amherst House

Amherst House

CQC Rating: Outstanding
  • Residential care
  • Dementia care
  • Nursing care
  • Nursing dementia care
  • Respite care
  • End of life care
  • Day club

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