John Gaymer, aged 77, was the first Owner to move into Churchill's new King Henry Lodge retirement development in Chingford when he got the keys for his one-bedroom retirement apartment in May. Since then he has made new friends and kept in touch with plenty of old ones too.
He said: “I was living on my own in a three-bedroom house so I knew I had to move but I’d lived there for 53 years and had some fantastic neighbours so it wasn’t easy to leave.
“I was keen to stay in Chingford as I have lived here for most of my life. I was looking for an apartment when I came across King Henry Lodge, which was less than a quarter of a mile away from my home.
“It’s absolutely perfect for me. Being so close I still use the same local shops and doctor’s surgery, so I still see many of my old friends and neighbours. But I also go to coffee mornings and spend time in the Owner’s Lounge where I can meet new people too.”
Mr Gaymer, a retired heating and ventilation engineer, purchased a one-bedroom apartment at King Henry Lodge, Chingford which is a collection of one and two bedroom retirement apartments located close to local shops including a newsagents, pharmacy, bakery, convenience store and post office.
He first visited the development on his own before he returned with his son, who was impressed with the facilities on offer including the Owner’s Lounge, which is available for the use of all residents as a casual meeting place or for an organised event, Guest Suite and landscaped gardens .
Soon afterwards, Mr Gaymer purchased an apartment and since then he has enjoyed the security and convenience offered by retirement living, which is proving increasingly popular as the UK faces major shortages in housing provision for elderly people.
At the time of writing, 11 of the 32 apartments have sold in the new Chingford development. It’s an exciting time for Mr Gaymer and his fellow Owners, with new neighbours moving in all the time. He is also looking forward to the upcoming events that Elizabeth Byrne, the Lodge Manager, has devised with the Owners.
Mr Gaymer, continued: “I really like it here. I have a great apartment with my own bit of garden, it’s quiet and I don’t have to worry about security. I can keep myself to myself when I want to, or pop down to a coffee morning if I want some company. I’m delighted I moved.”