Saturday 8th November saw over 300 of the very best in social care attended a glittering awards ceremony at the Hilton Hotel, Brighton  for the  finals of the Great South East Care Awards, where the category winners were announced.

The Great South East Care Awards, sponsored by Specsavers Healthcall, in association with Access Health & Social Care and the Royal Bank of Scotland, brought together the category finalists from across the South East region.

The awards are part of the Great British Care Awards, a series of 9 regional awards celebrating excellence across the care sector.  The purpose of the awards is to promote best practice within both home care and care homes sectors, and pay tribute to those individuals who have demonstrated outstanding excellence within their field of work.

Sector support includes the Department of Health, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), Alzheimer’s Society,  National Skills Academy for Social Care and the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) as well as local authorities and commercial organisations.

There are a total of twenty 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 drinks reception, followed by a superb gourmet dinner with some surprise entertainment throughout.  The awards were presented by entertainer Steve Walls with a surprise appearance of Stavros Flatley from Britain’s Got Talent fame.

The awards support a chosen charity, The Care Workers Charity, 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.

Jayne Rawlinson, director of business developmentof Specsavers Healthcall said:

“Specsavers Healthcall is proud to support the Great British Care Awards. It’s important to recognise and celebrate the incredible dedication of people working in the social care sector. Without them some of the most vulnerable people in our society would be far worse off.”

Paul Patarou, divisional manager, Health & Social Care Division, Access Group, said:

“As sponsors of the Great British Care Awards, it’s a great honour for Access Group to be involved in the judging process. With so many fantastic entries it’s clear to see the talent that abounds in the health and social care sector. The Awards provide an opportunity to recognise the hard work and dedication of everyone in the industry from volunteer carers and front line care staff right through to their colleagues who administer and manage the organisation. Working within Access’ dedicated Health and Social Division I often see first-hand the passion and commitment displayed by these incredible individuals; they’re truly are a credit to their industry.”

Bryn Bates, healthcare relationship director at Royal Bank of Scotland said:

“We are delighted to continue our support for The Great British Care Awards in 2014, a great avenue of celebrating the hard work and successes of care across the country. Our support for these Awards is just one way RBS reinforces its’ commitment to the Care sector and those that work within it.”

Lisa Carr, director of the Great British Care Awards said:

“The Great British Care Awards are now in their sixth year and are continuing to go from strength to strength.   We never cease to be amazed with the quality of nominations and this year is no exception.  The two new categories, The Good Nurse Award and The Arco Housing With Care Award, have also proved very popular, demonstrating the significance of integration between health, housing and social care.

“This evening was a true celebration for the unsung heroes of social care, without whom quality care provision in our communities would fail.”

Winners of the Great South East Awards will go through to one of two national finals for both care home and home care.  The finals will take place at The ICC Birmingham in April and June 2015.

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


Care Employer Award

Wendy Thompson – PJ Care

Wendy is a great ambassador for Pj Care and clearly cares passionately about the business. PJ Cares belief that success is about their people is reflected in their comprehensive training and development programme and in their commitment to involving everyone in their overall business goals.


Care Home Worker

Mandy Cliff – Huntercombe Group

Service Support worker of eleven years working in a potentially stressful environment, a good teacher and mentor always reliable providing the support the patients and staff need, especially in difficult circumstances.


Home Care Worker

Kelly Jepson – Hale Place Care Solutions

Kelly demonstrated during the interview a strong focus on the service user remaining at the heart of everything she did. Keen to learn and develop, adding value to lives.



Care Home Manager

Rosemary Milmine – Bevern Trust

The judges wanted to say that this was an extremely strong field. Rosemary’s holistic approach shone through, to the benefit of her residents and staff, creating a well-balanced home environment.


Home Care Manager Award

Ben Chudley – Nightingales Golden Care Ltd

Communicated very well and focused on delivering for his clients, team and business. Ben was extremely humble at the impact he has made within his business and the industry as a whole.


Care Newcomer

Georgina Rose – Greensleeves Home Trust

Georgina’s bubbly personality and passion for care is infectious. Georgina always goes the extra mile to ensure her residents remain cared for with dignity and reflect.


Nutrition and Hydration

Amanda Hodge – Greensleeves Home Trust

Amanda clearly demonstrated the attention to ensure support to service users is with respect and no less than would be expected in their own home.


Dignity in Care

Ann-Marie Medd – Colten Care

A shinning beacon in dignity in care. Aspirational in her practice and evidenced how this is embedded in every role and every action. Truly inspiring, and articulated through practice.


Dementia Carer Award

Victoria Wright – Hale Place Care Solutions

Victoria left us feeling inspired and enthused about her passion and commitment. She demonstrated how she had developed her skills and gained confidence and pride in her achievements  personally as well as to the person with dementia and her staff team.


Care Team Award

Valerie Manor

Truly compassionate team who brace the very best in care and support for older people. The team have been enabled by the exceptional management of Valerie Manor to support both one another and the residents in their care.


Care Home Activity Organiser

Elaine Bashford – Avante Partnership

Although this was a really difficult decision, with every candidate impressing the judges, Elaine’s passion, enthusiasm and energy really shone through! Well done Elaine, A worthy winner.


Ancillary Worker

Ken Speed – PJ Care

The Judges found Ken’s passion and commitment to his role inspiring. Bringing colour and perfume to the resident’s lives and encouraging them to walk through the gardens with him. Well done Ken, a true winner!


Care Trainer

Jyoti Kohli – Bluebird Care

Jyoti has a passion for continuous learning.  She adapts content to the needs of the organisation and is committed to developing her team.



Care Innovator Award

James Cropper – Creative Minds

James has a vision, plus drive and energy, he uses hi s creativity to empower, stimutate and engage vulnerable people. James impressed the judges with his determination and they are in no doubt his ‘vision’ will come true.


Frontline Leaders

Kelly Spillett – Blossoms Care Services

Kelly has a clear vision of high quality care delivery, understanding the importance of motivating and monitoring staff to the benefit of her residents. An excellent frontline leader.



Home Care Co-ordinator

Daniel Landridge – Bluebird Care

Daniel is passionate about co-ordinating the right care worker with each particular service user, and he ensures he uses the software system to do this. He is always seeking ways to improve and develop his role and shows great potential.


Putting People First

Karen Rides – Bluebird Care

Karen works tirelessly to effectively combine her business acumen with her passion for person centred care.  She single handily manages a growing business whilst supporting care workers and ensuring the service users remain at the heart of the service.  Karen really does put her service users and her staff first!


The Unpaid Carers Award

Tracey Carr – Beechtree Total Care


Tracy is employed as a support worker, however her spare time is spent supporting people who do not have anyone close by.


The Good Nurse

Charlotte Little – PJ Care

Charlotte clearly demonstrated a passion and enthusiasm for a person centred approach in all her answers which impressed the judges. Very well done


Outstanding Contribution to Social Care

Kevin Hewlett – Hale Place Care Solutions

Kevin is the Director and Registered Manager of Hale Place Care Solutions.  Since 1988, Kevin has devoted his working life to providing the highest quality care to the most vulnerable people in our society.  His mission is to provide quality social care which recognises the inherent human worth and dignity of all persons, and to make the services available to all without restriction.