Home Press Releases Alfred, 86, dances down memory lane during care home outing
MEMORIES of the Bolton Palais came flooding back to 86-year-old Alfred Derrick when he danced the day away on Southport pier during a recent outing from his residential care home.
Despite his advanced age, Alfred boogied to a rendition of the 1961 Ben E. King classic “Stand by Me” like he was back sharing the dancefloor with his late wife, Marian, in his younger years.
The pair previously enjoyed an evening dancing at the Palais during the 1960s and 70s, before the building was destroyed in a fire in July 1977.
Now living at Lever Edge Care Home, on Lever Edge Lane, Great Lever, Alfred has been making the most of day trips to the coast with his fellow residents and staff.
He said: “I met Marian at the Palais. She was an amazing dancer.
“Every time I dance it always brings back some kind of memory about her. Dancing is my happy place. It feels so good to be able to dance like this again.”
Lisa Martin, home manager at Lever Edge Care Home, said: “On our trip to Southport, there was a live band playing on the pier, so we all gathered to watch and Alfred, who loves to dance, was straight up on his feet for a boogie.
“He managed to get other people up dancing and was star of the show. Everyone wanted to dance with him he was like a celebrity.”
Alfred wasn’t the only resident taking a trip down memory lane during recent outings to Blackpool, Southport, and Lytham St Annes, with many residents recalling days out at the beach during their younger years.
For Iris Mortimer, 85, a chance canine encounter sparked memories of her own pet pooches and gave her the opportunity of a cuddle with the adorable bundle of fluff.
Alongside Janine Gibbons, the care home’s activities coordinator, Iris struck up a conversation with the dog’s owner, who asked if they would look after the dog while he went into the shop.
Having eagerly agreed, Iris said: “I love dogs. I had a miniature dachshund when I lived in Nigeria. I miss hearing the sound of his bell from his collar.
“I wish I could look after another dog. They are more than just dogs. They are family.”
Fellow resident Joan Bowes, 96, was happy to be back at the beach with an ice cream in her hand.
She said: “I never dreamt I could be sitting here, on the pier in Southport, eating ice cream. I’m having such a wonderful day. Thank you so much for bringing me.”
Home manager Lisa said: “We like to take our residents for days out, particularly to places they may have visited with their families in times gone by.
“It prompts many a happy memory and the seaside is always one of their favourite destinations for a bit of nostalgia.
“Unfortunately, due to covid, we’ve not been able to take residents on their usual summer trips for a while, so this year we decided to make up for lost time and have been enjoying days out at Lytham St Annes, Southport, and Blackpool.
“Everyone had a wonderful time, enjoying hot, sticky donuts, ice creams, strolls along the promenade, pub lunches, and dancing to a live band. We’re all looking forward to the next trip.”
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