Call us now on

0800 201 4811

Part Exchange: Bringing Families Together

Lifestyle

When Janet and Jim Mair moved into their McCarthy & Stone apartment, they didn’t just gain a lovely new home, they also gained closer relationships with their family. Here, three generations of the Mair family explain the difference the move has made to all their lives.

Until recently, Emma’s contact with her grandparents was limited by the 50-mile distance between them. ‘I only really saw them on special occasions, such as birthdays, Christmas and Mother’s Day,’ she says. ‘Mum was always driving back and forth to see them, but I couldn’t go with her because I was at school.’ 

Like many retired couples, Janet, 91, and Jim, 87, valued their independence. For 20 years, they’d lived happily in their three-bedroom villa in Livingstone, near Edinburgh, with regular visits from their three children and eight grandchildren. Then Janet’s health began to deteriorate. ‘Mum developed short-term memory problems and then, three years ago, she broke her femur and her mobility suffered,’ says their daughter Moira (Emma’s mum). The distance between them, once quite manageable, suddenly became a source of great stress, especially for Moira, 50.

‘I lived nearer Mum and Dad than my brothers, who both live in the Newcastle area, so I saw them most. I began staying with them most weekends, leaving home early on Friday morning,’ she recalls. ‘While I was there I’d clean and sort out the house, take Mum out and try to give Dad some respite. Allister [Moira’s husband] managed to keep everything going at home, so we survived, but it was grim.’ For nearly three years, Moira managed as best she could. ‘The stress levels were high. I always had an emergency bag packed and waiting at home – just in case they ever needed me in a hurry.’

Then last year, a colleague showed Moira a McCarthy & Stone brochure for a new development in Paisley, called Ashwood Court, just a 15-minute drive from Moira’s home. ‘I’d been trying to persuade Mum and Dad to move for years, but they’d always been reluctant,’ says Moira. ‘I was afraid to look at the development, in case I built my hopes up.’ But with persuasion from Allister, she finally agreed to take a look. ‘As soon as I walked through the door of Ashwood Court, I knew it was the right place. There was something lovely about it, I could feel my heart beating faster,’ recalls Moira.

‘When I entered the flat, it had lovely views and was so bright and spacious that I thought, “I could live here, and if I could live here, Mum and Dad could too.”

‘I stood in the living room – it was so peaceful. Then I phoned my brother and said, ‘I’ve found the right place.’” Thankfully, Jim and Janet were equally impressed when Moira took them to see it, and after carefully weighing up the pros and cons, they made their decision. Moira was determined the move would be as stress-free as possible.

Using McCarthy & Stone’s part-exchange service, Janet and Jim received a ‘very fair’ price for their house, and within six weeks they were ready to move. ‘My brother took them out for the day, while we did the move,’ says Moira. ‘The removers were brilliant and friends came to help too. We were exhausted, but by 7pm we had their new apartment sorted. When Mum and Dad arrived back, the family was waiting to welcome them home.’ Fortunately, Janet and Jim loved what they saw. ‘They came in, sat on the sofa and gazed around at their furniture and all their pictures on the walls. I said to Dad, “Are you a happy man?” He smiled and replied, “I’m a very happy man.” That’s all we wanted.’

Six months later, all the family are enjoying the benefits of the move. Moira’s brothers and their family visit regularly, taking advantage of Ashwood Court’s guest suite. ‘The great thing is that when my brothers visit Mum and Dad, I can see them too, whereas before it was just too far to travel. So now we’re all seeing more of each other and it’s definitely brought us a lot closer together.’ Moira still can’t believe how lucky she is to have her parents nearby. ‘It’s been 30 years since they lived this close to me … to be honest, I never thought I’d see the day. The difference is unbelievable.’

Best of all, she can enjoy their company instead of just worrying about them. ‘I’m not exhausted from the driving. I can just pop in whenever I want to, knowing they’re both safe and secure.’ Emma is reaping the benefits. ‘Grandma and Grandpa are more involved in my life. When I finished my last dress, a heavy Victorian design, I took it straight round to show Grandma, which is something I could never have done before.’

Jim and Janet are also developing a new social life at Ashwood Court, much to their family’s delight. ‘I can go to coffee mornings with them and I’ve been to several social events too,’ says Emma. ‘Just having other people to natter with makes a difference, especially for Dad,’ says Moira. So what do Jim and Janet make of their new home, now they’ve had a chance to settle in? ‘Everything is easier because our family is so close to us,’ says Jim, who is certain they made the right move, at the right time.

‘We have a delightful family, always looking out for each other and for us. And the apartment is right up our street. It feels like home – well, it is home.’

As for Moira, she no longer needs to have that emergency bag. ‘One of the greatest gifts elderly parents can give to their children is peace of mind and that’s what I now have,’ she adds. ‘It’s worth its weight in gold.’

Like this article? Subscribe to receive updates...
Subscribe to receive notifications when we post new articles to our online magazine.
Loading...
By subscribing to these updates you’re agreeing to receive email updates when new articles are published to the McCarthy & Stone online magazine.
We’ll never send you spam or sell your details. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Related Articles

Lifestyle

Hurry to Surrey

A small commute south of London but a million miles from the hustle and bustle of the capital sits rolling countryside, vast woodlands and quaint English villages ...Read more

Lifestyle

Beautiful Bistros

Our in-house catering team have been working behind the scenes to bring new services into our Retirement Living PLUS developments for our customers to enjoy ...Read more

Lifestyle

Couple Forge New Friendships in Retirement

Leslie and Ann Harpin, 87 and 81 recently made the decision to move to McCarthy and Stone’s Isabella House Retirement Living development in Hertford. The couple are not only enjoying spending more time together, they also have a new group of friends who they refer to as their extended family.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

Your Resale Questions Answered

McCarthy & Stone’s Resales Director, David Gabriel has over 20 years’ experience selling preowned retirement properties and heads up our dedicated in-house resales service. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Your Retirement Move is Safe in Our Hands 

The loss of a loved one is such an emotional experience for the family without the added stress of them being faced with selling their home. But if you need to sell your property, McCarthy & Stone Resales can take care of everything. ...Read more

Lifestyle

McCarthy and Stone Resales Success

McCarthy & Stone Resales is having a positive impact when it comes to supporting those who wish to resell their retirement properties, as well as helping new customers experience what a retirement living lifestyle is all about. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Tuning in To Singing in Later Life 

A singing group comprised of retirees from McCarthy & Stone’s Chinnerys Court Retirement Living development in Braintree, is showing how singing lifts the spirits and can be good for your health.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

A Tale of Happily Ever After

Good communication, consideration for each other and never going to bed without making up – are the secrets to a long, loving and successful marriage, says homeowners Mr and Mrs Bowhill. ...Read more

Lifestyle

£130,000 and Counting

Thanks to your generosity, we have smashed our target for this year’s charity partner Beanstalk. Here's a round up of some of the activities we have been getting up to across the UK. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Our Ultimate Christmas Recipes 

We've spoken to our Catering Manager who provides us with his ultimate Christmas recipes for you to try this season. They’re great for putting you in the Christmas spirit, and your friends and family members will love them. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Christmas Events – Roundup

We’re hosting a series of ‘At Home’ Christmas events for our residents and their families. Find out more about what’s happening in our roundup blog post.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

DIY Christmas Gifts you Still Have Time to Make 

With the countdown to Christmas now on, it’s time to start thinking about Christmas gifts. There are those people who buy and wrap everything by October, and then there’s the rest of us, who possibly leave things till the last minute. Well, why not get organised this year? ...Read more

Lifestyle

Christmas Decorating Tips 

To help make your home full of Christmas cheer, we’ve spoken to Clare Gibson, Head of Interior Design at McCarthy & Stone who’s provided her top Christmas decorating tips. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Tips for Successfully Downsizing

Many people find that later in life that their home is far bigger than they need. Downsizing can bring a variety of benefits, including both financial and practical ones. That said, it can often be an emotional or difficult time.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

Remarkable UK Gardens for Autumn Colour 

Another season has flown by and now the summer heat has faded with the turn of autumn. With the cooler days and longer nights, our gardens are transforming into a rich tapestry of colour, from fiery reds and oranges to majestic golds. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Caring for House Plants 

From succulents to spider plants, the demand for indoor foliage is showing no signs of slowing down. No matter what the season, low maintenance house plants are ideal for brightening up the look and feel of a room. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Foraging Favourites

For many people, collecting and eating wild plants and fungi has been part of life since childhood, filling punnets with wild edibles from ripening berries to sweet chestnuts. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Spotlight on York

A city of extraordinary cultural and historical wealth woven into  every  brick and beam, York seeps history at every turn. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Summer Events in 2019 To Look Out For

The summer season is packed with a variety of events to appeal to a range of interests and ages. Savour the delights of new and exciting cuisine, enjoy the thrill of world-class horse racing and discover the latest super cars, at events taking place across the summer months.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

It's All Greek To Us

Sparkling white beaches, deep blue seas, sugar-cube villages and venerable ancient sites make the
Greek islands an idyllic holiday destination for many. Tourists can immerse in the Greek cuisine,
century-old sites and local culture each island has to offer, while enjoy luxurious accommodation
and the locals’ warm and welcoming hospitality. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Fishing for Fun

Looking for an exhilarating and challenging activity that brings a sense of serenity and calmness? We think we’ve found the perfect catch. ...Read more

Lifestyle

It’s time to start living life to the full again

A McCarthy & Stone Retirement Living Plus apartment is about getting more from life for the over 70s. It’s the perfect combination really - company when you want it, help when you could use it, care when you need it. And all in the comfort of your own stylish new home. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Staying Cool and Well During A Heatwave

Although warmer weather can be a welcome sight for many, the increased temperatures can lead to
added risks for some, particularly those with health issues or those that are more vulnerable. Stay well with these tips.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

The History of Father's Day

Father’s Day is the perfect time to thank fathers and father figures for their help and support. In this post, McCarthy & Stone look at the history of Father’s Day. ...Read more

Lifestyle

A New Adventure 

Colin and Pat Mackay are looking forward to making the most of their retirement following their move to North Berwick.

...Read more

Lifestyle

The Benefits of Downsizing in Retirement

There are many benefits of downsizing and if this is something you are considering, here, we share our knowledge about downsizing, and explain why it could be one of the best things you can do for your retirement.   ...Read more

Lifestyle

Blooming Marvellous: The Chelsea Flower Show

The world-famous RHS Chelsea Flower Show. It’s the most glamorous day out in the gardening calendar.

The grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea are once again blooming with flora as the Royal Horticultural Society prepares to welcome 157,000 spectators to their annual five-day flower festival in May. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Working After Retirement – Is It For You?

More and more people are choosing to put off their retirement and continue working. Plus, in many other cases, those who have already retired are looking to return to work. Here, we weigh up the pros and cons of each situation. ...Read more

Lifestyle

How To Manage Your Diet In Retirement

There are many extra demands placed on our bodies as we progress through life and because of this our nutritional needs also change as a result. It is never too late to revamp your nutrition and nurture your body with a healthier diet.   ...Read more

Lifestyle

Tackling loneliness among older people with Pen Pals

We understand the problem of loneliness amongst older people and we want to do something to combat it. That’s why we have created our latest Pen Pals programme, an outlet to connect older people with other older people in communities by the writing and exchanging of letters. Click to find out more. ...Read more

Lifestyle

How To Make New Friends In Retirement

Friendship is hugely important at every stage in life, and retirement is no exception. What’s more, in retirement you could make the most of the extra free time you have to discover different experiences and meet new people – leading to new friendships and relationships.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

Sheffield – The Steel Centre of the World

Famed for its industry and innovation, the green, modern cityscape now replaces the smoking chimneys from the industrial revolution. There’s a friendly, independent and alternative spirit that can be hard to find in other cities alongside a thriving cultural scene. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Wally & The Flying Scotsman

Popular North Gate Court customer Wally Blazey moved into their McCarthy & Stone apartment with his wife Gladys seven months ago, and the couple have just celebrated their 72nd anniversary. At 92, Wally is one of the two last surviving drivers of the Flying Scotsman, the most famous steam locomotive in the world. ...Read more

Lifestyle

The Top 11 British Hidden Gems

Where are the best locations in the UK to visit... that you've probably not heard of? We've ranked the best hidden gems around Britain, that are easy to access, and offer a great weekend away with the family. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Do Pets Make You Happier?

Whether you're a pet owner or have a pet free home, animals of all kinds have been proven to improve the happiness of their human counterparts. To find out more McCarthy & Stone conducted a survey to see how pets enrich their owners lives. Here are the results! ...Read more