Hastings Court residents give care worker Chloe her dream wedding during lockdown
Our residents at Hastings Court Care Home have given a couple the wedding they couldn’t have because of the Covid-19 restrictions.
Lifestyles assistant at Hastings Court Care Home, Chloe Oliver-Taylor, and her partner, Matt, were planning a celebration with 70 family members and friends at Crowhurst Park in Battle in October. But the pandemic meant their party was cut to just 15, their vows were shortened and they weren’t allowed to exchange rings.
Chloe’s colleagues at Hastings Court stepped up and with the residents’ help, created the big wedding the couple had been hoping for.
After celebrating the impending nuptials with a hen party in the home’s bistro, Lifestyles Manager, Kimberley Mann, set about organising the big day.
She said, “We wanted to bring a bit of magic into the home and that’s exactly what we did. Residents can’t make memories with their families at the moment, or go out and be part of these kinds of events, so we thought we’d bring that experience to them. It really made them feel like they were part of Chloe’s big day.”
Matt, who volunteers with the lifestyles team when he’s not working as an emergency medical technician, chose resident David Lee as his best man as the two would regularly go fishing together before the lockdown.
Resident, Roger Taylor, walked Chloe down the aisle and Clare Braybon, who’s lived at Hastings Court for four years, fulfilled a lifelong dream to be a bridesmaid at the age of 60.
Clare said, “It was a wish come true for me. It was a wonderful day and I still can’t believe I can keep my dress!”
Chloe had stopped off at the home on the way to the real ceremony so the residents could see her dress and wish her well. On residents being part of her big day Chloe said, “The residents are like family to me, I tell them everything, so they had to be part of my big day!”
“I couldn’t have a full service or a proper reception then and I am so grateful that I could do those things with everyone at Hastings Court.”
Catering staff created a wedding cake for Matt and Chloe, and Sainsbury’s superstore on John Macadam Way donated flowers to make bouquets and to decorate the home.
Resident Rhona Handcock did a reading and wished the couple vitality, understanding, contentment and memories.
Kimberley continued, “There aren’t many jobs where you can build such a relationship with the people you work with. We were able to give Matt and Chloe a special day and our residents a wonderful experience.
“They kept thanking the happy couple for inviting them, they really felt like they belonged and no home can hope for more than that.”
Find out more about Hastings Court Care Home.