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Nov 08, 2022
A care home resident’s wish came true when he travelled 140 miles to visit the football team he’s supported since childhood.
86-year-old Daniel (Danny) Warner, a resident at Care UK’s Priors House, in Leamington Spa, travelled to Ipswich Town Football Club, returning to the stadium he visited every Saturday with his dad growing up.
The nostalgic trip to the stadium also saw Danny get to meet club legend John Wark and current player, Sam Morsy.
“I remember watching John Wark when he played for Ipswich, and he was a really good player. It was an honour to meet him and we shared some great memories. I am grateful to have been given such a wonderful opportunity.”Danny Warner, 86, a resident in Care UK's Priors House
When Priors House first opened in June 2014, the team installed a ‘Wishing Tree’, an initiative launched by Care UK which allows residents to suggest ideas for new hobbies they’d like to try, places they’d like to visit or even activities linked to past careers. This encourages residents to live fulfilling lives – from skiing to a fish and chip supper, no wish is too big or small.
A football fanatic, Danny was born into a sport-mad family and recalls one of his early memories is of going to Ipswich Town Stadium to watch games with his dad every weekend and cheering on the team.
As a young man, Danny pursued his passion for the sport and tried his hand at becoming a professional when competing in trials for his favourite club, Ipswich Town FC. Although unlucky, Danny remained a fierce fan – supporting the team at every opportunity and is still one of their number one fans today, dedicated to watching all games.
On the big day, they arrived at Ipswich Town FC stadium, where they were greeted by the club’s Master of Ceremonies Match Day Host, Rodger Oatley, who led them through the tunnel to the main grounds.
Marvelling at being back on the same blades of grass after a decade away, Danny was lost for words when none other than ex-Ipswich Town FC player John Wark made his way over to meet him. After bonding with John over their shared joy for the sport, Danny was served up a gourmet three course meal in the glamorous Sir Bobby Robson Suite and was wined and dined, ready for the game.
Following the end-to-end game, Danny was called upon for the Man of the Match ceremony to meet Ipswich’s very own Sam Morsy.
Danny said: “When I was younger, my Saturdays were spent going to Ipswich Town with my dad. My favourite thing about being back was to see everybody again – the crowds and to meet my pals, I enjoyed every minute of it.”
Lewis Blake, Lifestyle Lead at Priors House, who attended the game with Danny, said: “Here at Priors House, no wish is too big or too small, and so when Danny spoke of wanting to revisit a place which holds so many special memories for him, we knew we had to make his dream a reality.
“We are thrilled to have helped Danny complete his wish and it was wonderful to see the smile on his face as he re-entered the stadium of his youth to take a trip down memory lane.
“The team at Priors House make it a top priority to delve into resident’s life stories to learn more about their lifelong passions and see how they can bring special wishes to life. After hearing all about Danny’s youth trials for Ipswich Town FC and his continued love for the team, spanning over 80 years, the team made it their mission to get him back to where it all began.
“I cannot wait to see what wish we organise next – let’s hope we hit the back of the net again!”
Priors House is a state-of-the-art care home which provides full-time residential, nursing and dementia care, as well as short-term respite care. Designed to enable residents to live enjoyable and fulfilling lives, the home has its very own cinema and hair salon, and there is plenty of space - both indoors and out - for relaxation and recreation. The home has a comprehensive activity programme, offering a mix of themed events, group activities and days out.
To find out more about Priors House, please contact Customer Relations Manager, Maria Cridge, at email@example.com, or phone 01926 675 217.
For more general information, visit careuk.com/priors-house
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