COVID-19 support - our Buddy Scheme

We look back on March 2020 and our team’s amazing response to an unprecedented crisis.

Help on hand during lockdown

When the coronavirus crisis hit, our teams leapt into action to ensure all our homeowners were not only safe, but happy too, with access to food, medicines, entertainment and companionship.

To counter the immediate effects of lockdown on our retirement communities, and with impressive speed, we created a Buddy Scheme from scratch. The aim was to ensure every homeowner had a trusted friend, family member, or volunteer to bring them essential medical and food supplies. We also wanted to make sure that everyone had someone to talk to during this strange and scary period.

Our House Managers and Estates teams worked incredibly hard to keep in constant touch with our homeowners — one took on the shopping for the entire retirement development! And over 500 of our employees stepped up to help too. It was a truly remarkable effort and we couldn’t be prouder of everything that was achieved.

The Buddy Scheme taught us a great deal — about the resilience, loyalty and dedication of our homeowners and our teams — but also about the practical steps that can help our community to feel more connected, more independent and safer as we adapt to a new reality. We’re currently testing three brilliant initiatives that will help do just that.

Supporting our retirement communities through the coronavirus crisis

The Grapevine

An invitation-only online community just for people living in McCarthy Stone apartments. It allows you to meet neighbours, keep up to date on news and events, share information, join clubs and chat.

Telephone grocery shopping

A friendly alternative to online shopping from Morrisons supermarketwith free next day delivery tailored to McCarthy Stone homeowners.

A volunteering network

Volunteering proved popular with the volunteers as well as the people they helped, so we’ve created a network to allow homeowners, employees and family members to find out about volunteering opportunities at our developments. Read more about our response to keeping people safe throughout the pandemic.


Rates of COVID-19 infections in McCarthy Stone communities have been 70% lower than among people of the same age in wider society.*

*National Statistics for wider society are taken from and McCarthy Stone data was researched December 2021.

a man wearing glasses

Thank you

"To Betty. Generous, kind, the nicest person that you’ll find, she brought me carrots, cauli and peas when Covid put me on my knees!"

Karen, Arden Grange

Anne - thank you - McCarthy Stone

Thank you

"To June, Rukudzo and Jake for helping Les and I stay safe and happy during the pandemic"

Ann, Isabella House

Thank You Marion | McCarthy Stone

Thank you

"To Arun for our bright and early supermarket runs during lockdown, so that I could stock up on all my favourite fresh fruit and vegetables. Delicious!”

Marion, Randolph House