Family owned and managed nursing home, Birtley House, welcomed the Mayor for Mayen-Koblenz, a district in Germany that has been twinned with Waverley Borough Council since 1977, on a visit to Surrey in which he was looking to learn about best practice within the UK’s care sector.
The Mayor of Waverley, Councillor Denise Le Gal, joined Dr Alexander Saftig, the Mayor of Mayen-Koblenz, and residents from Birtley House, which has been operating from the Birtley Estate for 73 years and as a Surrey care home since 1932, during the visit.
Mark Lebus, a Surrey Hills Enterprises’ Ambassador, Clare Nelson of the Surrey Sculpture Society and a selection of local artisans also attended to demonstrate how local organisations have been contributing towards harnessing Surrey’s community spirit and successfully integrating it with the care experience provided by Birtley House over the years.
From left to right: Simon Whalley, Chairman at Birtley House, Rosanna Gethin with her leathercraft stall, represented by Surrey Hills Enterprises, and the Mayor of Waverley, Councillor Denise Le Gal, welcome Dr Alexander Saftig, Mayor for Mayen-Koblenz, on his best practice visit to the UK.
Simon Whalley, Chairman at Birtley House, comments: “We are delighted to be able build on the longstanding relationship between Mayen-Koblenz and Waverley Borough Council, and honoured to have been selected as a leading light when it comes to care delivery. Not only does Birtley House work tirelessly to provide excellent care, but we also work hard to ensure that the care we do provide is not carried out in insolation and that residents have every opportunity to integrate with the community in a way that they would have done prior to needing support.”
Also in attendance were representatives from Halow Project, an initiative that supports young people with learning difficulties in Guildford and around Surrey, many of whom are currently learning valuable skills whilst on placement at Birtley House.
On the visit The Mayor of Waverley, Councillor Denise Le Gal, adds: “It’s been wonderful to show Dr Saftig around our fantastic borough of Waverley and Birtley House has certainly provided us with a very warm welcome.”
The afternoon ended with local ‘woodland folk’, wood carvers and leather craft experts demonstrating local crafts and skills that have previously been on display during the Surrey Hills Wood Fair, which takes place every year in partnership with Birtley House.
Simon concludes: “We hope that the Mayor of Mayen-Koblenz found value in our approach and is able to apply its principles in Germany.”