I had lived in the same house for 72 years when I moved into a two bedroom apartment at Mickle Hill on August 6th this year.
I had heard about Mickle Hill through a friend who moved here when it first opened about four years ago and I was always really impressed when I would come to visit. All the facilities looked great and her flat has so much space in it – I was grabbed from the beginning.
I did look at other developments near home, but I had Mickle Hill as a base line in my mind and nothing else that I saw touched it. I wanted to move while I was still mentally and physically capable and now here, I’m looking at it as a new adventure. I can make more acquaintances and go out and about.
I’m really pleased with my apartment. I use my second bedroom as an extension of my living area, which is fine, because if people want to stay with me there is a guest apartment available which we can rent for friends and family. I’ve already had some friends visit and they were amazed at how spacious the village is and they’re really interested in it. My flat is on the top floor and I have South East facing windows with a great view of sheep and cows from the nearby farm, which is lovely.
What I like most about life at Mickle Hill is the fact that you can live independently but you can choose to mingle with others as and when you like. It’s the mix and match that I enjoy, it’s not regimented at all, staff are lovely, and they are always around to help.
When I moved to Mickle Hill my stresses immediately went away because I used to worry about my house maintenance, my garden, and being on my own if anything should happen. It really came home when a friend of mine was on holiday and had a stroke while out running – he was very fit and just about my age. I thought if it can happen to him, it can happen to me. I started worrying about how I would contact someone in an emergency if I wasn’t able to use my mobile phone. Shortly after that I lost my front door key and when the repair man was fitting a new one, he said ‘no one will get in here, it’s very secure’. Although my neighbours have a key, they go away quite a bit and I started to worry about how someone would get in if I was ever in trouble. A double-glazing man also came to look at my windows and he told me how he had recently taken a window out for police and paramedics to get to a lady who was stuck inside. All these things mounted, and I thought I had to move.
I’m not married and have no children; my nearest relative is an 88-year-old cousin who has grown up children of her own. I thought that I can’t just land myself on them if I’m poorly and you can’t expect friends to come and live with you if you need that degree of help. So, all these accumulative thoughts are what spurred me to move.
Since moving I haven’t had much chance to take part in social groups due to covid restrictions, but I’m going to start using the Jacuzzi once that reopens. The gym has reopened, and I will need to be taught how to use the equipment first. I will also use the arts and crafts room as I enjoy calligraphy. They have games nights like scrabble which I plan on joining as it will be a good way for me to meet people.
Even though I have recently moved to Mickle Hill, I already feel part of a community. When you meet residents, everyone says hello and passes a few words whether you know them or not. Staff are wonderful too – very helpful and cheerful.
We are all of the same mindset – you know that nobody will be playing rock music at 3am – whereas if you lived in a normal flat it’s usually potluck with who you happen to be next to. The homes at Mickle Hill are well soundproofed and the apartments are excellent.
I would say that what I benefit the most from living at Mickle Hill is the peace of mind it gives me and just contentment. I have no longing to go back to the house that I was in for 72 years. This is home now, and it felt like home right from the beginning. That’s a big thing when you’re on your own because sometimes you get tired of trying to make your own way in life and it’s so nice when you‘re in a situation where you can easily meet people and talk about things.
It feels like Mickle Hill has been tailor made for me, I am very happy here. Some of my friends did not understand why I was leaving friends behind, but lockdown was like a practice run really because I couldn’t see them. I could talk to them on the phone just like here and eventually we were able to meet up and see each other.
Miss S, New Mickle Hill Resident