On Saturday 20th April at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London provided a spectacular backdrop for the national finals of the Great British Care Home Awards where the fifteen category winners were announced.

The Great British Care Home Awards, hosted by English Community Care Association (ECCA) are the national finals from the series of nine regional Great British Care Awards in Autumn 2012. Winners from each region were invited to compete once again to become the national champions.

Sector support includes the Department of Health, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), the National Skills Academy for Social Care,  Ceretas, local authority support and commercial organisations are also supporting the awards.

There were a total of fifteen award categories available for nomination, which represent all areas of the care sector,whether it be older people or specialist services and from frontline staff such as care workers and care managers to people who have made an impact in other ways such as training, and specialist care in areas such as dementia and innovation.

The gala awards evening started in style with a champagne reception, followed by a superb gourmet dinner with some surprise entertainment throughout.  The awards were presented by ballroom dancer and TV presenter Anton Du Beke and the evening concluded with music from a live band and dancing into the night.

The awards support a chosen charity, The Care Professionals Benevolent Fund, the registered charity for the care sector that support current, former and retired care professionals by providing assistance to relieve financial hardship or sickness and also provide advice and guidance on the availability of state support and links with debt counsellors.

Professor Martin Green, Chief Executive of ECCA said,

Social care workers are some of the most valuable, and yet least recognised members of society. Every day the work that these people do makes a real difference to the lives of millions of people and their impact goes far beyond the people they support. Their hard work and dedication to caring, also gives peace of mind to families and friends, who can feel confident that you are supporting the people they know and love.

The service users and their families know the difference these individuals make, and the development of the Great British Care Awards, has now provided an opportunity for this commitment to care to receive wider recognition.

Lisa Carr, Director of the Great British Care Awards said,

“This is just the fourth year we have held the national finals and we have been overwhelmed by the enthusiasm from our industry. The quality of the finalists from across the country and throughout the sector is extremely high and the judges have had the unenviable task of choosing an overall winner for each category – a true national champion.  The awards offer a unique opportunity to celebrate the successes of individuals, teams and businesses throughout the UK – people who really do make a positive impact on people’s lives.  During these testing economic times social care has once again suffered the impact of associated adversity – the awards are a positive way of raising motivation within our social care workforce and indeed the profile of the sector as a whole.  The evening has been truly exhilarating; everyone here tonight is a winner.”

The winners of the Great British Care Home Awards, together with the judge’s comments are detailed below:


The Care Employer Award

Summercare- Dr Asif Raja

East of England

Summercare is a people based service where staff and service users clearly work in partnership, not only are they all integrated into the community but they have a great time together!


The Care Home Worker Award

Joyce Edwards- Anchor

North East

Joyce was so proud to say that she is a carer. Joyce told the judges she has gone from a kitchen assistant who wouldn’t say boo to as goose to a confident carer who will challenge anyone on her resident’s behalf. Well done Joyce!


The Care Newcomer Award

Jennifer Bliss- New Century Care Leolyn

South East

Jennifer demonstrated a genuine care for others with the essential quality that can neither be taught nor learned. Jennifer was an inspiration and will go far in the care industry, congratulations Jennifer!


The Care Home Registered Manager Award

Alison Bedford- Peregrine House

Yorkshire and Humberside

Alison is passionate about care and continually strives for excellence.  Alison has an innovative approach to person centred and her ideas inspire her staff.  A worthy winner!


The Nutrition and Hydration Award

Andrew Mussett- Majesticare

South East

Andrew’s thirst for knowledge and quest for constant improvement convinced the judges that he is a true nutrition champion. His energy, passion and influence extend far beyond the home he works in and he genuinely wants to make a difference.


The Dignity in Care Award

Susan Bumstead- Norse Care Ltd

East of England

Susan wants to be hands on and feels privileged to be. Personal choice is of great importance and she allows people to say no. Susan ensures that all the little things are looked at and makes an obvious dignity champion. With Susan the residents are all that matters.


The Dementia Carer Award

Beth Tovey- Cambrian Green Day Services

South West

We were impressed by not only Beth’s passion to deliver dynamic services within her own organisation but to work alongside other strategic thinkers to influence society’s perception of people living with dementia.


The Care Team Award

Marlborough Court Care Team- Four Seasons Healthcare


The team at Marlborough Court have demonstrated a real passion for achieving the highest standard of care. Collectively they have succeeded in building a strong cohesive team whose commitment has rebuilt the reputation of the home.


The Care Home Activity Organiser

Timothy Lumgair- The Bevern Trust

South East

A truly inspirational young man whose residents’ feedback that they love him. Tim was very keen to tell us that the residents change his day for the better by the little things that they do and winning this award would be wonderful for everyone at Bevern Trust. Well done Tim!


The Ancillary Worker Award

Deborah Sorenson, Elizabeth Finn Homes

West Midlands

Deborah is an ancillary worker with a difference. Her tasks were not limited to front of office duties, she also brings support to staff and residents alike which contribute to a smooth running of the home.


The Putting People First Award

Daniel Wylie & Natalie Wylie, Aldanat Care


The judges were hugely impressed with their passion and enthusiasm in delivering truly person centred outcomes. They provided many excellent examples of bespoke care delivery and clearly want to make a positive difference.


The Care Trainer Award

Maggie Woloszyn- Shelbourne Senior Living

Maggie impressed the judges as a determined, passionate and enthusiastic learning & development manager. She worked her way up from the position of housekeeper showing great creativity and dedication along the way. A delightful candidate and very worthy winner.


The Care Innovator Award

Sharon Wood- Meridian Healthcare

North West

Sharon impressed the judges by her 110% commitment and dedication to providing quality care and support services. She has developed a very successful system which is evidence based and has clear measurable outcomes. Sharon delivered change and improvement at all levels – well done Sharon!

The Frontline Leaders Award

Leonnie Martin- Springfield Healthcare Group

Yorkshire and Humberside

Leonnie demonstrated herself as an unstoppable force in leading her team to provide real person-centred care. Leonnie showed understanding and insight into the challenges within the environment she is leading and gave real examples of how she enabled people with dementia to access the community.


The Outstanding Contribution to Social Care Award

Anne Cooke- MCCH Society

South East

With no sign of retiring, or even slowing down, Ann has already dedicated 65 of her years to supporting disadvantaged people to achieve their aspirations. Her interest in social care started aged 14 as a St John Ambulance cadet.
Whilst raising her family Ann worked for MENCAP establishing a range of MENCAP home development schemes.
In 1995 she joined the board of MCCH, a small organisation developing alternatives to institutions and supporting people in the community. Ann became chair and, through her leadership, MCCH grew and now supports 2000+ people with learning disabilities, mental health issues and autism.

Ann is a Mental Health Act Manager for Kent and Medway, and Surrey and Borders NHS Trusts and was chair for the Complaints Review Panels for Kent and Medway.
Ann, who is 79, still works tirelessly supporting people who otherwise would not have opportunities to achieve their full potential.

Anne’s achievements are many and there is so much more we could say about her but sadly so little time.  Ladies and Gentlemen please put your hands together for Anne!