Residents at a Shropshire care home are on the path to a more active lifestyle, thanks to a £5,000 grant.

Briarfields in Raby Crescent, Shrewsbury, has revamped its outdoor environment with activities such as a bug hotel, hopscotch, basketball hoops, a wildflower garden and light and sound arch as well as installing a ‘man cave’ in the grounds to entice people to the great outdoors.

The work has been funded by a £5,000 award from the Shropshire Council Public Health Everybody Active Everyday scheme run in alliance with Shropshire Partners in Care.

The grant will also support the care of the golden Labrador dog called Charlie whose role is to motivate residents to get involved in his daily exercise and care regime. He lives with the home’s manager Denise Morris and comes into Briarfields every day.

As Denise explained, residents had been key to developing the plan to get them more active. “Research has shown that the least active people benefit from the smallest increase in activity. Also increased mobility and physical activity leads to stronger muscles, better health and fewer falls.

“We worked with residents to develop the plan and they came up with the ideas of what would get them more active such as more activities outside. The additions to the garden will make it a more attractive and fun place to be and the ‘man cave’ will be a great place for residents to potter about in and enjoy a cuppa outside of the home even if the weather’s not great.”

Residents are encouraged to take part in Charlie’s daily routine including taking him out for walks, playing with him and grooming him.

Denise added: “We will be testing residents activity levels to see how they improve as part of the project. Staff and families are very supportive and the improvements and addition of a pet to the home will add an extra dimension to living here for our residents.”

June Lambley and Denise Morris (Manager) with Charlie the puppy.
June Lambley and Denise Morris (Manager) with Charlie the puppy.