Scheme celebrates silver anniversary – with help from Jimmy

Scheme manager Stella Watson and resident William Royle with Jimmy Cricket. Photo by Ian Howarth.
Scheme manager Stella Watson and resident William Royle with Jimmy Cricket. Photo by Ian Howarth
Comedian Jimmy Cricket provided a welly-full of laughs for residents, staff and neighbours from Roeacre Court sheltered housing scheme in Heywood to celebrate 25 years since the project started.

The Irish comedian, who lives in Rochdale, was the star turn at the celebration attended by a host of special guests including Mayor of Rochdale Councillor Alan Godson, Jim Dobbin MP, councillors Peter Rush and Colin Lambert, plus Carol Matthews, Chief Executive of Guinness Northern Counties, the housing association which owns the scheme.

Champagne and chocolates were presented to 96-year-old William Royle, along with his favourite tipple, a bottle of Navy Rum, for being the longest serving resident of Roeacre Court. Mr Royle has lived at the scheme since it first opened. Scheme Manager Stella Watson has also been at Roeacre court for all of its 25 years.

A buffet and champagne toast were provided for guests on Saturday July 16, with music played by the Whitworth Brass Band. The entertainment continued into the evening with a belly dancer and a DJ before Jimmy Cricket took to the floor.

Carol Matthews said: “It’s tremendous to be at Roeacre Court to celebrate 25 years of an excellent scheme with a fantastic community. This is in no small part due to the care and attention the residents and scheme gets from Stella Watson, an inspirational colleague who has been with us and the scheme since opening day.

“I’m also delighted to have the honour of presenting a token to Mr Royle who is 96 years young and has also been with us for each and every one of those 25 years. This scheme has, and still is, a great asset to the community and I’m very proud to play a very small part in the day.”

The scheme is home to 36 residents with care services provided by Guinness Care and Support.

* See more pictures from this event in the photo gallery on this website

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