At Heather House in Tadley it’s been a month of celebrations. It’s our 220th anniversary this year and Heather House is celebrating their 20th birthday as well! They held a garden party to celebrate, inviting friends, family and volunteers to come and enjoy the sunshine all together.

Many local residents who regularly spend time volunteering at Heather House will know that it is home to young people with life-limiting degenerative conditions and complex learning disabilities. It also has a reputation as a world-leading ‘centre of excellence’, the only one of its kind in the UK, supporting young people and their families, as they battle the devastating effects of juvenile Batten disease. Heather House, and its newly launched Outreach Service, supports families on their journey of diagnosis and its treatment options enable young adults to enjoy life within a safe haven.

20 years ago, a committed group of supporters helped to establish Heather House – they included The Wolfson Foundation and a member of their organisation returned to help us celebrate at the garden party. The afternoon was a great success, with a tour of the building and specialist facilities, followed by a barbeque, cake and music from a steel band, which went down a treat! There was a lovely relaxed atmosphere, with the people we support, their family and friends, support staff, volunteers and visitors all coming together to celebrate.

We were proud to host MP Kit Malthouse, who was impressed with our volunteers. Many of our volunteers have been with us for years, and a few have been so dedicated that they have volunteered at Heather House since it opened! Kit Malthouse MP said:

Some superheroes don't come with capes and I met two this week. Dorothy and Eirlys both celebrated two decades of volunteering at SeeAbility Tadley (Heather House) helping residents with life-limiting degenerative diseases such as juvenile Batten disease. Remarkable.

Our team at Heather House provide outstanding nursing and care, always aiming to enable people to make their own choices and express their individuality. Dawn Hawken, Manager at Heather House said:

I’m delighted that all the people we support and their families, our staffing team and our fabulous volunteers are able to come together to celebrate the wonderful work that is carried out here – it means a lot to be able to express our thanks.

Our Chief Executive Lisa Hopkins gave a lovely speech to recognise the achievements of the people we support at Heather House and the hard work of their support team:

I’d like to take this opportunity to celebrate the people we support at Heather House and all of our colleagues at SeeAbility who achieve so much.  Over the past 20 years, SeeAbility has pioneered changes in support for the people who live here in Tadley and I’d like to thank all of our supporters for everything they do. I look forward to celebrating more birthdays in the years to come!

Heather House 220 party for SeeAbility