Replica shops of city’s past help care home residents reflect

Northcare Manor, a new care home in Edinburgh which incorporates an old shopping street to help its residents reminisce.
Northcare Manor, a new care home in Edinburgh which incorporates an old shopping street to help its residents reminisce.
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Wandering down the “street” at Northcare Manor, shoppers can take a nosey in the window of Binns department store or have a peak at the window display in Duncan’s Sweetshop.

The replica shop frontages of Edinburgh’s stores from the past have been reconstructed to allow residents at the Meggetland care home to reminisce about Auld Reekie days gone by.

The iconic Binns Haberdashery, Lillywhite’s News, Rankin’s Grocers – who had shops at the West End, Tollcross and Nicolson Street – and Duncan’s Sweetshop from Morningside are set up alongside a 1950s car and petrol pump, a cinema and cocktail bar.

Thought to be the first of its kind in the UK and drawing inspiration from the street scenes in Glasgow’s award winning Riverside Museum, the team at Northcare Manor, have set up the old shopping street in the new purpose-built luxury care home. It is part of the family-run Northcare Group and mother and son team, Margaret and William Sawers, were determined to provide a unique care environment to help enrich the residents’ environment.

They have worked with the Dementia Services Development Centre at the University of Stirling and are working towards a gold star recommendation from the centre, such is the high standard of care and amenities available.

The home also has a vegetable garden and mini animal farm to promote memorable experiences.

Director at Northcare William Sawers, said: “We went to great lengths to research some of the features we wanted to create here at Northcare Manor to ensure they were suitable for the home, but more importantly, they would be suitable and welcoming for our residents.

“Some of the residents we’ve welcomed so far remember the shops we’ve recreated, and you can see the positive effect it has as they reminisce.”

The nostalgia street was made possible with the support of a £7.73 million funding package from Royal Bank of Scotland.

Mr Sawers added: “We have been Royal Bank of Scotland customers for 25 years, and they have been instrumental not only in what we have created here in Edinburgh, but throughout the history of our business.”

Around 75 care, administration and management jobs have been created as a result of the Edinburgh home opening.

Northcare’s second Edinburgh development, Northcare Suites on Telford Road, is currently under construction and will open in 2019.

Relationship Director at the Royal Bank of Scotland, Charles Robertson, said: “With nearly 30 years’ experience, Margaret and William have created a truly unique care environment, focusing on the highest standards of care 
coupled with five-star facilities and characteristics.

“Royal Bank of Scotland is proud to support Northcare in the next stage of its growth and we wish the team every success.”

fiona.pringle@jpress.co.uk