Winners 2015

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Awards Ceremony Video



Award Winners 2015

Outstanding Neighbour

Joint Winners

Alan Jones
Andrew Orchard


Outstanding Neighbour Alan and Andrew 2

Judges said:

"Since moving into their retirement flat almost four years ago, the boys, as Alan and Andrew are affectionately referred to in the nomination, have created a real sense of community for their neighbours. They have introduced a programme of leisure activities such as theatre and cinema visits their neighbours describe as 'life-enhancing', as well as a once a month fish and chip night. And in addition to this, Alan and Andrew are on hand and always willing to help out when other residents need a bit of practical support.

The judges praised Alan and Andrew for going out of their way to involve others who are more isolated. Through their efforts they are helping other residents be part of their community and enjoy life.

Unfortunately Alan and Andrew are not able to be here today as they are on holiday. But their neighbour, Margery, who nominated them, has kindly agreed to receive the award on their behalf."

Winners said:

 "We had no idea we’d been nominated so it has come as a complete surprise to find out we have won this award.   They’re such a wonderful bunch of people here at Grange Court.  We’ve formed a community.  At first there were only half a dozen of us but as the numbers have grown we have made a real effort to involve new residents.  We introduced our news sheet which tells people about activities like cinema and theatre visits.  And we started the monthly fish and chip night which is really popular.  Now more people are getting involved and they’re suggesting new activities they want to include, which is great.

We don’t do this for the recognition but it’s lovely that people appreciate what we do.  We feel humble and proud at the same time. "

Care Professional of the Year 

Mandy Hannigan

Promoting Independence Coordinator
Supported Integrated Discharge Service



  • Annmarie Yardley, Senior Care Service Manager Family Care Trust
  • Peter Heald, Senior Physiotherapist Solihull Hospital
 Care Professional of the Year - Mandy Hannigan

Judges said:

"Mandy works for Solihull Council as part of the Supported Integrated Discharge team. The aim of the team is to reduce the length of time people stay in hospital and to help them return home as soon as they are able.

She is one of 3 social care assessors within the team and works in partnership with therapists at Solihull Hospital.

Mandy has shown outstanding dedication and commitment to her job including working on a voluntary basis at weekends in order to provide a 7 day service for people being discharged from hospital.

The judges felt that Mandy went the extra mile (in fact more than one) for her patients, and for that reason, is a worthy winner of our Care Professional of the Year award."

Mandy Hannigan said:

"I am extremely proud to receive this award. I would like to thank my manager, Julie Blake, for enabling me to have an opportunity to work in this integrated team (SID) and acknowledging the commitment I give in making a difference to the lives of people in Solihull."


Health Professional of the Year 2015


Phillip Hall
Senior Nurse Dementia
Solihull Hospital



  • Chris Doolan, MR Pharmacy, Monkspath
  • Minesh Parbat, Practice Support Pharmacist Lead, Solihull CCG
 Health Professional of the Year - Phillip Hall

Judges said:

"Since joining the team at Solihull Hospital two years ago Phillip has worked tirelessly to improve the care of older people, especially those living with dementia. He has introduced changes to make Solihull a truly dementia friendly hospital and has created a charitable fund, Dementia Care at Solihull, to help fund those changes. He spends a lot of time fundraising, including his (winning) performance in the Solihull Does Strictly night and his walk from Worcester to Solihull! According to colleagues, his desire and enthusiasm are inspirational and his energy is boundless.

The judges commended Phillip for his dedication and passion for improving the lives of older people and for all the work he does to educate colleagues and inspire them to make Solihull Hospital a leading light in dementia care."

Winner said:

"I was pleased to win.   Anything that highlights the work that is happening around improving the care of people with dementia is a good thing.  I am very lucky to have worked with a wonderful team on Ward 10 and now with the exceptional Dementia and Delirium Outreach Team. I am very aware that a lot of the recognition I receive is for their hard work.  I am also grateful for the support from my manager, associate nurse, Ann Edgar.  I am proud of what has been achieved so far to make our hospitals truly dementia friendly and look forward to continuing to work with the team to improve care for people with dementia"


Care Team of the Year

Swallows Meadow Court 



  • Brokerage Team, Solihull Council
  • Dementia Discharge to Assess Ward Team
  • Solihull Community Housing's Safe and Sound Team
 Care Team of the Year - Swallows Meadow Court
Judges said:

"This was the most popular category in our awards, with eight nominations for teams ranging from support for people living with dementia, to caring for people in their own homes and end of life care.

Swallows Meadow Court is a care home in Shirley. Their Care Team consists of nurses, care assistants, activities staff, catering, domestic and office staff.

The judges praised this 'superb team of professionals' who come across as highly motivated and proud of what they do.

The team have been praised for their 'care and devotion' by a MacMillan nurse who works with them. Thank you notes from families of people who were cared for at the home also highlighted the love and compassion shown by all staff at Swallows Meadow Court."

Winners said:

"We feel very proud to have been finalists in two award categories and honoured to have won Care Team of the Year.  It's particularly great to get recognition for our dedicated end of life care and our collaborative working with Monkspath Surgery and the Macmillan Team.

Our staff are proud of their work so the award means a lot because it is recognition for the really important care they deliver to our residents and their families."


Primary Care Service of the Year

Hampton Surgery



  • J&D Mason Opticians, Shelly Farm
  • Monkspath Surgery


Primary Care Service of the Year - Hampton Surgery

Judges said:

"On a visit to the local lunch club to give flu vaccinations, staff at Hampton Surgery were surprised to see how differently their patients were coping (or not coping) outside of the surgery setting. This experience led them to look more closely at the needs of their older patients and think about how they could promote health and wellbeing to a vulnerable group of people. The result is a new wellbeing support worker service which offers signposting and practical help on a range of issues including finance and social isolation.

Although it's a small practice, Hampton Surgery is a teaching practice for medical and nursing students and a training practice for foundation year two doctors and GPs in training (GP Registrars).

Judges praised the attitude of staff at the surgery who have looked at what they could do to improve the quality of people's lives. They are engaged with their community and have worked in collaboration with their local village charity and pharmacy to provide a service which is having a really positive impact."

Dr Ryan Price, on behalf of Hampton Surgery said:

"Hampton Surgery is absolutely delighted to have received this prestigious award.  It has been a huge boost to staff morale.  We look forward to further developing our community services into the future, hopefully to act as an exemplar of good patient centred care for the older population."


Dementia-friendly Service of the Year

Arts and Libraries Service
Solihull Council



  • Dementia Outreach Team, Solihull Hospital
  • Solihull Community Housing
  • Solihull's Dementia Discharge to Assess Service
Dementia friendly service of the year - Arts and Libraries Service Solihull Council

Judges said:

"Staff at the Council's Arts and Libraries Service have been working to increase understanding of dementia in the community, promote the support available for people living with dementia and for their network of family and friends, and raising understanding of the condition amongst staff, library stakeholders and volunteers.

They have hosted a series of Dementia Friends training sessions and now hold regular events, supported by a local Dementia Champion, which give local residents, including friends and family of people living with dementia, the opportunity to find out more about the disease and share their experiences.

The judges praised the Arts and Libraries Service for their commitment to improving the lives of people living with dementia in Solihull. They have gone beyond their core business to offer something extra which is clearly appreciated and valued by people who use the Arts and Library Service. The judges felt that they had really demonstrated the meaning of Dementia Friendly."

Tracy Cox, on behalf of Solihull Council's Art and Libraries Service:

"I am absolutely thrilled that Arts & Libraries have received the inaugural award for the best Dementia friendly service.

There is often a misconception that libraries are just about books and this award really demonstrates that libraries offer a range of services that support and help people lead better lives.  Arts & Libraries provide the social glue that connects communities, individuals and partners."


Outstanding Project Delivered in the Community

Joint Winner:

  • Paul Murtagh
    Beechcroft Walking Football Club


  • Olton Library, Craft, Chat, Knit and Natter Club
Outstanding Project Delivered in the Community Award - Joint Winner  Paul Murtagh Walking Football Club

Judges said:

"Paul Murtagh, A lifelong Solihull resident, has led the launch of the Walking Football Club at Beechcroft Multi Sports Club. The activity has transformed the physical and mental well-being of the people involved with many of the older members commenting that that Walking Football has 'changed their lives'. It gets them out of the house and it is the part of the week they most look forward to.

The judges commented on Paul's 'passion and drive' and the time he gives on a voluntary basis to run the Walking Football club."

Paul Murtagh, on behalf of Beechcroft Walking Football Club:

"We're honoured to be recognised for our work in the community.  We have been overwhelmed by the feedback we've received from people who come along to Beechcroft Walking Football Club.  We only put it on originally as a fun session and never expected it to go this far.  But we're now running sessions three times a week and are looking to extend the idea to other sports like hockey and cricket.

When people get to a certain age they might think their sporting days are over.  But our Walking Football Club makes sports accessible and gives people a new lease of life and it's not just about physical benefits, it's not just about physical benefits, it's about wellbeing too.

People have said to us "You are literally saving my life with this" or describe the session as the best two hours of their week.  We thrive on the feedback.  It makes you want to do more and more and we love the fact that we're helping other people."


Outstanding Project Delivered in the Community

Joint Winner:
  • The Thursday Club



  • Olton Library, Craft, Chat, Knit and Natter Club
Outstanding Project Delivered in the Community Joint Winner The Thursday Club Solihull

Judges said:

"The Thursday Club, which meets at Solihull Synagogue, is for the over 60s. Although it caters for the cultural needs of Jewish senior citizens, including providing a kosher meal, it is non-denominational.

For many people, who are vulnerable and isolated, the Thursday Club provides the only freshly cooked balanced meal they eat all week. It also gives them an opportunity to meet and mix with other people in the community and to access information from local voluntary organisations.

The judges praised the Thursday Club for providing support to a group of people who could otherwise suffer a lot of isolation. The Club meets a specialist need but is also inclusive and welcomes the wider community."

Rabbi Pink on behalf of the Thursday Club said:

"We are delighted that the Thursday Club has received this award.  It gives the volunteers, who are the life blood of the club, the recognition which they richly deserve.  Many of the people who come along to our club regard it as the highlight of their week.  They will also take pride in the fact that the Thursday Club has been recognised for its work."


Outstanding Initiative in Supported Living Award

The Team at Phoenix House
Extra Care Service


  • Solihull Community Housing's Safe and Sound Team
Outstanding Initiative in Supported Living Award - The Team at Phoenix House Extra Care Service

Judges said:

"Phoenix House is an extra care scheme in Shirley which provides individual apartments for older people who want to live on their own but may need personal care and support.

The team at Phoenix House have put together a wide range of activities as well as resident volunteering and fund raising. The service has made links with other organisations to introduce new activities such as Boccia [pronounced Bo cha] (seated bowls) run by the Council's Solihull Active team, fashion shows, parties, visiting entertainers and events as well as old 'favourites' such as bingo, quizzes and coffee mornings.

Judges loved the range of activities on offer. They also commended the enthusiastic and positive leadership of the team at Phoenix House who have created a happy and vibrant community for their residents."

Beverley Miles, Scheme Manager at Phoenix House said:

"I'm absolutely honoured and overwhelmed to receive this Award on behalf of the team at Phoenix House.  It's just brilliant.

Phoenix House was the first extra-care scheme in Solihull - the flag-ship - which I was privileged to be part of.  We have built up an excellent programme of activities and entertainment over the last year.  It realy makes a difference to the residents' lives.  They are becoming very competitive, recently winning a cup for their Boccia win, whilst competing at another scheme.

A special thanks to my assistant, Jo O'Brien, who helps make it all happen."


Outstanding Customer Experience

George Fentham Trust Lunch Club



  • Sydney Ashby, Solihull Pensioners Association
  • Solihull Citizens Advice Bureau
  • Solihull Connect
Outstanding Customer Experience Award George Fentham Trust Lunch Club

 Judges said: 

"Run by volunteers, the George Fentham Trust Lunch Club supports the frail elderly in Hampton. It provides a hot meal, an exercise class and friendship for the 20 people who go along every fortnight.

The judges praised the work of the volunteers who provide delicious food and companionship, as well as transport for people who could not otherwise get to the lunch club. The club offers a varied programme, a sense of community and belonging. It is a lifeline to the people who attend and sometimes the only outing those residents have each fortnight."

Malcolm James on behalf of George Fentham Trust Lunch Club:

"We are feeling quite elated by the award and a little surprised - it's the first award we've received.

Hampton in Arden is a caring sort of village.  We are also an ageing village and we began to realise that some of our villagers were becoming lonely and isolated, particularly as their mobility deteriorates.

Through the Lunch Club, which is financed by the George Fentham Trust, we have started to get those people together.  We started with half a dozen people and are now seeing 30-35 villagers at our club every fortnight.  They'd like to have it every week if we had the volunteers.  For the people who come along it's a social outing but it's also about improving their wellbeing.

The Trust has three trustees and about 20 volunteers from the village who help out during the year.  The award is fantastic recognition for their hard work."

Chairmans Award

Solihull Community Housing
Chairmans Award  - Solihull Community Housing

 Judges said:

 "Solihull Community Housing provides housing services to around 11,000 council homes on behalf of Solihull Council. Their aim is to give all their residents the opportunity to enjoy their home and environment and to be part of a community.

They offer a specialist support service, Safe and Sound, which helps older, disabled or vulnerable people to live independently. This support includes reducing isolation, developing independent living skills and enhancing the quality of life for residents and their carers.

Solihull Community Housing have been nominated for a number of categories but have been pipped at the post each time. The judges wanted to award them the Chairman's Award to recognise the outstanding work they have done to support older and vulnerable people.

The judges praised Solihull Community Housing for going way beyond their core responsibilities as a housing provider. Judges also commended the breadth of their approach in supporting residents which is helping to keep people independent and improving lives."

 Tracey Moorby on behalf of Solihull Community Housing said:

"We were delighted to be part of such an inspiring day and very proud to win the Chairman's award, which recognised our contribution in helping support older and vulnerable people in Solihull.

The awards celebrate and raise awareness of the work by individuals and organisations in Solihull to support older people in the community and it was great to see such a wide range of services represented.

By working in partnership we can continue to make a real difference and help people stay healthy and independent in their own homes and communities.

We're looking forward to next year's event!"



Collaborative Working Award

The Solihull Partnership
Winter Warmth Campaign



  • The Gadgets Team and Solihull Community Housing
  • Swallows Meadow Court and Monkspath Surgery and The Macmillan Team
Collaborative Working Award - The Solihull Partnership Winter Warmth Campaign

 Judges said:

"The annual Winter Warmth campaign has been running since 2008. It provides support and assistance to Solihull residents who are vulnerable and most at risk during the coldest periods of the year. This support includes providing emergency equipment and assistance when heating breakdown occurs and referrals to a range of services.

The campaign is commissioned by Solihull Public Health, and led and coordinated by Solihull Council and Age UK Solihull. But, it is delivered by a partnership of around 27 local organisations.

The judges praised the partnership work for this campaign which makes a real difference to the lives of older people. They also commented on the case studies which demonstrated the practical support provided by the partnership." 

Robin Dunlevy, on behalf of Solihull Partnership's Winter Warmth Campaign Project Team said:

"Our Winter Warmth campaign has grown from strength to strength, since it was originally developed in the space of just three weeks in 2008.  The campaign is commissioned by Solihull Public Health, and led and coordinated by Solihull Council and Age UK Solihull.

It's always good to have your hard work recognised.  Especially as the people involved in the campaign go way above and beyond what's in their job descriptions. The campaign involves around 27 separate organisations and all these people get together to provide tailored, timely support for vulnerable people in Solihull all year round.

Our case studies prove what an impact the campaign has on people's lives. Everyone involved can be very proud of their efforts."

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