Wigan Warriors and England International player, Michael McIlorum, visited Ash Tree House residential and dementia care home in Wigan to officially open their brand new pub-themed lounge, The Ash Tree Arms. Michael, who has played over 200 games for the Warriors, mingled with residents and staff at the home before tucking into some pub grub. He also took the time to sign autographs and have his photo taken with the residents and staff.
Kathryn Disley, Home Manager at Ash Tree House, said: “Everyone was so excited about Michael visiting to officially open the Ash Tree Arms. Many of our residents are avid Wigan Warriors fans so there has been a real buzz at the home since finding out Michael is coming. He certainly caused quite a stir when he arrived and it was great to see him raising a glass with our residents. We have all had such an amazing day – the pub is a great addition to our home and I am sure it will create a fantastic social hub for our residents and their family and friends.”
The idea of The Ash Tree Arms was borne from a Social Committee Meeting at the home. Residents picked the name and had a hand in choosing the design of the pub, which includes authentic bar stools and tables, a bar area complete with Guinness pump and pool table. The residents were keen for the pub to have a sports theme and have had a large TV installed to ensure that everyone can watch upcoming sporting events such as Euro 2016 and the Olympic Games, as well as their much loved Wigan Warriors games.
Michael, who is currently injured after suffering a broken ankle during a game in February, said: “I really enjoyed meeting everyone at Ash Tree House. There are some great characters here, and lots of Wigan Warriors fans. It really is a home from home and the new pub is fantastic, especially as it has a sports theme! I had a great time and I will certainly drop by again.”
Ash Tree House is located in Hindley and is operated by Ideal Carehomes. The home provides residential and dementia care for 60 residents and is committed to offering them aspirational lifestyle choices. Breaking down the pre-conceived perceptions of care home life, the residents at Ash Tree House enjoy an active social environment with events, trips and daily activities on offer.