When Susan King moved from her Devon bungalow to a brand new two bedroom apartment at Churchill Retirement Living’s Headley Lodge in Ashtead, she knew it would give her more time to spend with family and pursue her many hobbies. A keen gardener, knitter, bowler and art enthusiast, there’s no doubt she is continuing to live life to the full into her 90s.
“I wanted to move back to this area to be closer to my three children who all live nearby,” Susan explains. “My brother owns a Churchill apartment in Lymington, so I’d seen first-hand the benefits of retirement living. I decided on a two bedroom apartment on the top floor at Headley Lodge, so I can enjoy nice views of the local playing fields. I use my second bedroom as a sitting room and an extra space to hang all my paintings, which mean a lot to me.”
Susan is keen to highlight the benefits of her decision, adding: “I would definitely encourage other people to downsize, it makes a lot of sense as you get older, and it frees up homes for younger people. I’ve also found it’s actually cheaper than living on your own in a larger house, as you don’t have to pay for your own gardener, window cleaner, or general upkeep and maintenance. I wasn’t sure if that would be the case prior to my move, but now I’ve been here a while I’m pleased to say it is. Our Lodge Manager Jane is also great to have around.”
No more worries about bills or maintenance means Susan can spend more time doing the things she enjoys, like tending to the allotment she shares with her daughter. “I gave away all my gardening stuff when I moved,” she says. “But then my daughter suggested an allotment, and now it’s something we enjoy doing together. We grow pretty much everything – fruit, vegetables and flowers – and I bring some of it in to share with my neighbours at the Lodge. I’ve also joined the local bowls club, which is another hobby I’ve shared with my daughter for many years.”
Susan is unfazed by Covid-19, her main observation being that “We’ve all just got to use our common sense”. It certainly won’t stop her from being an active member of the growing community at Headley Lodge, as Churchill’s Sales Executive Alex is keen to point out. “Susan is a great Owner, always giving flowers and veg away,” he says. “She made jams and marmalade for our Macmillan coffee morning recently, and she also knits like a pro. I’ve seen an Argyll jumper she created and it looks like something you’d buy in a shop, very impressive!”
It would be hard to find a more positive example of someone whose move to a Churchill Retirement Living apartment has helped to maintain an active, independent and enjoyable lifestyle.