After a life and career that took him around the world, Mike Richards and his wife Jackie are enjoying a stunning new outlook on life in their childhood home of Penzance, after moving to an apartment at Churchill Retirement Living’s Mount’s Bay Lodge.
“We were rattling around in a four bedroom house that was far too big for us,” says Mike. “We decided the time was right for us to downsize, and the pandemic didn’t put us off from making the move. My bowling colleague Bob recommended Churchill, and now we’re next-door neighbours!”
“Our new apartment is very warm and cosy, everything is nice and new, and we have a very nice outlook from our balcony across the bay to St Michael’s Mount. We’ve seen some beautiful sunrises. I got lots of admiring comments when I posted a photo of one on my Facebook page.”
Mike and Jackie were both born in Penzance, not far from Mount’s Bay Lodge, but Mike joined the army at the age of 17 for a career that would take them all over the world and back again. He spent 22 years as a Telecommunications Engineer in the Royal Signals, which included time in Hong Kong, Singapore, Germany and Belgium. On leaving the army Mike continued his career in the telecommunications industry in various parts of the UK, before going back to university at the age of 50 to retrain as a social worker.
“I studied in Southampton, at what is now known as Solent University,” says Mike. “After that we spent a few years working in Southampton, whilst living in Winchester, but deep down we always wanted to move back to Penzance one day. I took a job with the Probation Service in Truro in the late 90s, and then in the early 2000s we eventually moved back to our home town, in a house just along the road from Mount’s Bay Lodge.”
Having enjoyed a busy social life since their return to Penzance, the couple are hoping their new apartment will give them more time to do the things they love. “I am a keen member of our local lawn bowls club, which is how we know Bob,” says MIke. “So am looking forward to some bowling when the lockdown restrictions are over. In the meantime we’re keeping ourselves busy with weekly quiz nights and bingo nights via Zoom and Jackie does a spot of Zoom pilates.”
Although they are already acquainted with the man next-door, the couple haven’t been able to spend much time with their other new neighbours yet due to Covid-19. However, they enjoyed a socially distanced ‘pasty and prosecco’ welcome party in the Owners’ Lounge when they first moved in. “Fortunately it was just before the stricter lockdown measures came in at the end of December,” says Mike. “That gave us a chance to meet people and everyone was very welcoming. We’re looking forward to getting to know them all better very soon!”