Gudrun and Fred are the first people GLH helped in 1998 to find a place to call home. Gudrun part bought her home with Mencap through a shared ownership approach and GLH has helped manage the property since.
By providing supported landlord services, GLH makes sure they are happy in their home year on year, supports with tenancy matters and carries out repairs. Gudrun and Fred share their story about how they met and became good friends.
“When we were younger, I lived on a farm with my family and Fred lived at a long stay hospital. I moved to Rutland House, it’s a residential care home, then Fred moved in,” says Gudrun.
“It wasn’t long before we became good friends,” says Fred. “When we left Rutland I went to live on my own and Gudrun shared with three other ladies. We kept in touch and would visit each other. We went on holiday together too.”
“I’m the youngest of seven children,” says Gudrun. “When my Dad passed away he left us some money. I used it to part buy my home with Mencap. My Sister, Helga is my Guardian so she helped to sort it out.
I asked Fred if he wanted to share with me. We decided to stay in Trowbridge because we already knew the area, and our friends live close by and activities are here. Mencap began to support us. I’ve known one of the members of staff for a long time as she supported me when I lived at Rutland.”
Fred says, “We came to look at the house, I remember it was on a Friday. There was a family living here as there was a child’s mat on the floor in the lounge. We liked it straight away. Gudrun chose the bedroom closest to the bathroom and I had the other bedroom. The back garden is nice too.”
“On the day we moved in, the people were still moving out when we arrived. It took a week to decorate everywhere, we chose what we wanted. There were lots of people helping us,” says Gudrun and Fred. “It’s been good to come and go as we please, it makes a difference from being told what to do. Now, we can do what we want, when we want. It’s very quiet here, and feels like this has always been our home.”
“The pictures of animals and statues are mine,” says Gudrun. “We use to have cats, dogs, cows and shire horses on the farm when I was growing up. I’m also a member of the RSPCA and knit blankets for the animals, I really like knitting.”
Fred says, “I’ve got lots of tractor magazines. I worked on a farm for over 30 years for a very nice gentleman. I use to drive the tractor around the fields, help carry the bales of hay and tend to the horses and cows. When I moved in here I’d already retired, but I still like going to the bigger shops to get my tractor magazines.
I’ve got one sister left and some nephews and nieces. I sometimes travel to Rugby to see them, that’s where I’m from.”
“We’ve got quite a strict routine, and we both do the cooking,” says Gudrun and Fred. “Our friend Carol comes every Saturday, we always make sure there’s a cheesecake and some cider for her. We knew her from Rutland and we’ve stayed good friends.
Golden Lane Housing visit us every year, they’re very helpful. We know that we can pick up the phone if we’ve got any problems with our house.
We’re both really happy living here. It’s a lovely home.”
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