What about my dog?
Richard Brannan couldn’t bear the thought of being parted from his faithful companion.
Having a pet can be a big boost to wellbeing at any time of life, but especially so in later years. But what if you’re a devoted dog owner thinking of moving into a retirement development?
Richard explains: ‘When my wife died, I decided to get a dog and visited a rescue centre in Wokingham, where I first saw Mucker, a collie. It took about six months to really establish a bond between us. Perseverance and training helped settle him in.’
Mucker became a real companion for Richard and he couldn’t imagine life without him. He needn’t have worried.
McCarthy & Stone is more than happy to welcome small pets into its developments, as long as they are well behaved. The company recognises the positive influence animals can have, as well as the contribution they can maketo a vibrant and sharing atmosphere within retirement communities.
At Calico Court in Glossop, Mucker is now part of the fabric of the community. Richard says: ‘All the residents get together for a chat and a drink every Friday, and Mucker makes sure he is a member of the gang. Everyone is delighted to see him and he is always looking for a stroke and a pat.
‘I am delighted that I was able to bring Mucker with me to McCarthy & Stone, who were very happy to have him once they knew of his friendly character. Walking him is fantastic as it helps keep me fi t and active.’
In fact, he has become a star attraction, not only making friends with all the residents, but as a popular sight around the town when he is on one of his frequent walks with Richard.
The big question facing Ann Girling ahead of her milestone 70th birthday was what did she really want from her retirement years?
It’s something she’d put a lot of thought into. ‘I want to enjoy a flurry of travel and adventure,’ says Ann, a retired secretary from Poole, Dorset.
‘I’ve worked hard all my life, and downsizing was an opportunity to release some equity to fund the African safari I’d always dreamed of.’
Since moving to McCarthy & Stone’s Waterman House Retirement Living development in Broadstone, Ann has made many new friends and found a true companion in 80-year-old
‘We hit it off from the start,’ says Ann, ‘talking about our ambitions, plans we wanted to make, places we wanted to see. We both wanted to go to South Africa. So I said, “How do you fancy coming with me – we’ll make an adventure of it!”’
Dorothy did lots of research. ‘She’s definitely the planner out of the two of us – I’d be lost without her,’ says Ann. ‘I was keen to see lots of wildlife, so she suggested we go in the dry season when animals gather at the waterholes.’
Back in the UK, her purpose-built McCarthy & Stone apartment has also allowed Ann to settle into a simpler lifestyle. ‘All the everyday tasks that used to get in the way of enjoying the lifestyle I wanted no longer matter.
‘I have less housework and I no longer have to spend hours gardening. My outgoings are slightly less and the sense of freedom I have gained is fantastic.’
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