Everyone who attended the Official Opening of Ash Lodge in Walton-on-Thames not only had the chance to share in the celebrations as the development was officially unveiled, but also had a unique opportunity to meet one of Britain’s favourite TV personalities, Dame Esther Rantzen DBE. 

Ash Lodge on Churchfield Road, comprises of 58 one and two bedroom private, self-contained apartments specially designed for retired Owners, many of whom were able to meet and chat with Dame Esther and share her experiences and tips for a happy and healthy later life.

Churchill Ambassador Dame Esther, has worked tirelessly to champion the needs of the elderly. In 2012 she founded The Silver Line with the aim of combating loneliness in isolated older people and has worked closely with Churchill Retirement Living to set up The Churchill Awards, the annual celebration of the achievements of the over 65s. 

“Growing older is something to be celebrated,” she declares.  “Older people have so much to offer. People of retirement age who are lucky enough to be able to stay as active and as involved as possible, and can spend time doing volunteering work, trying new hobbies or socialising with friends and family, find it gives them a great sense of achievement and purpose.”

Her philosophy, which exactly reflects Churchill Retirement Living’s own, is that the retirement years should be anticipated in a positive way. Older people should be supported so that they can find out what’s on offer for them and enjoy life to the full.  “As I get older it’s my ambition to have as much fun as I can.  If I were Prime Minister, I would make it a legal requirement that every older person must have fun at least once a day.  In fact, I think we should all make sure we laugh at least once a day!”

She continues: “I believe wholeheartedly in keeping your mind active as long as you can, by finding company that you enjoy, sharing time with people you like and doing things that you find engaging.  Working in a team also gives you companionship, so the Owners’ Lounges and the social events like the coffee mornings seem to be a great idea.  It has been heartening to meet the Owners of Ash Lodge and hear so many positive stories from them.”

At Ash Lodge, Owners have been keen to take advantage of the range of features designed to make later life easier; such as the Owners’ Lounge, Guest Suite and Resident Lodge Manager, as well as security features such as a video-entry system and 24-hour emergency Careline.  All of the apartments have spacious rooms throughout and are an ideal combination of design and functionality. The fully fitted, stylish kitchens include a built in fridge and freezer, hob and an oven, which is located at an easy-reach height. All of the properties also benefit from illuminated light switches for added convenience.

The development is set in landscaped gardens which are perfect for socialising with friends and family, and is just a short distance from public transport links, shops and all the local amenities on offer in Walton-on-Thames.

The Ash Lodge Show Complex is open daily from 10am to 5pm. For more information on Ash Lodge or Churchill Retirement Living, call 01932 283839.

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