Moon landing celebrated by residents who ride care home's 'space rocket' lift
Clad in a white space suit, man took his first tentative step out of the Apollo 11’s space capsule ‘Eagle’, accompanied by excited pensioners whose journey to the Moon saw them soar to the first floor of their care home in a lift that had been transformed into a 'space rocket'.
What was a small step for residents became a giant leap for social care as care home staff created an out of this world lunar landing experience for residents by converting a lift into a rocket at Pendine Park’s Highfield House Care Home.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the planet, care home activities co-ordinator Christine Lewis thought she would try to recreate the scene with residents at the Wrexham-based care home.
She and fellow activities co-ordinator James Wallice became astronauts for the day donning space suits to lead residents into a newly-created Eagle for a speedy lift-off to the Moon.
The care home's lift looked like the inside of a space rocket with added effects such as windows and control panels covering the walls.
To the sound of Frank Sinatra singing ‘Fly me to the Moon’, they reached the lunar surface via the first floor.
The sound of Sting singing ‘Walking on the Moon’ was then heard as residents planted a Pendine Park flag in one of many sick bowls that had been painted to resemble lunar craters on the Moon’s surface.
Resident Glenys Cross, aged 85, was one of the first to brave the capsule bound for the Moon.
Glenys Cross said: “The rocket to the moon was really good and better than watching telly.”
The 85-year-old grandmother said: “Today brought back some memories but most of all it’s been good fun.
“Fifty years ago, I was working in school meals in Wrexham. My husband Gerald, who passed away 30 odd years ago, was still alive then too.”
Activities coordinator Christine Lewis said: “I was trying to think of something different to inspire residents but in a fun way.
“Saturday’s and weekends in general are quieter so I wanted to give residents something different, but something that would be fun and at the same time give them a chance to jog a few memories.
“It certainly got residents thinking with some recalling what they were doing when the moon landings took place 50 years ago.”
A 71-year-old Noel Hughes said: “It was brilliant. I was only a lad really when the moon landings happened but I do remember it vividly.
“We have had a brilliant day and I enjoyed making the sounds of rockets and astronauts talking on the radio.”
Residents also ate space-themed treats such as Milky Ways, Mars bars and Galaxy chocolate.
James Wallice added: “Some have said we have caught a dose of moon madness but if it’s got people thinking and laughing then we have done our job.”