Euphoria as Mullagh tenants return to transformed home
The tenants of Mullagh Houses in Limavady will be celebrating this year with a special sense of ‘comfort and joy’ as they hang Christmas decorations in their plush new surroundings. It took two years to complete. Apex-coordinated the works remodelling Mullagh Houses into a ‘supported living facility’.
The 24-year old block originally constructed to meet residential care needs, has been transformed by Apex into a modern ‘supported living’ facility – with the addition of more ensuite rooms, a first floor balcony, new fitted kitchens, laundry area, additional reception and family rooms, a separate administration unit with its own entrance
as well as bus/car parking bays and patio and landscaping areas overlooking the magnificent Roe Valley.
The newly installed energy efficient gas heating system and insulation features are also expected to deliver a reduction in fuel costs when the bills are calculated in the coming months. The official handover in mid-September brought to an end 18 months of working with, and at times among, the building crews. Six tenants remained in the home while it was under reconstruction, while the rest were accommodated in two temporary buildings off-site.
For the tenants and staff, led by manager Karen Oldcroft, it was a challenging transition but one that was made very much easier by the cooperation, thoughtfulness and foresight of AMS Construction.
“It’s been two years since Apex opened up a very comprehensive consultation with residents, families, staff and the community ahead of extensive works here,” said Karen.
“At least 18 months of that involved working in what at times, for the staff anyway, felt like a building site. But the architects, builders and tradesmen did a fantastic job in minimising the disruption and noise for those still living here.
Karen also revealed that each of Mullagh Houses key workers went that extra step to make sure the tenants got exactly what they wanted.
“The Mullagh staff are a credit – they took the tenants shopping to choose their bed linen and furniture. The ensuite rooms make a huge difference but all of the rooms have been fitted with new vanity units and no two bedrooms are the same.”
“I love my new bedroom and ensuite, it’s perfect.’
Not surprisingly it’s the personal touches that have made this thoughtful refurbishment so meaningful, Karen explains: “Martin’s key worker found a beautiful old black and white snap of Martin as a baby on his mother’s knee. She had it blown up onto a canvas and it has pride of place in his room. Bridget’s key worker got a special gold embossed paper for her bedroom – it’s like something you’d see in a luxury hotel. And both Joan and Julie Ann went for matching duvet covers and curtains and lots of framed photos and montages.
“Martina took me shopping and I chose my new duvet, curtains and furniture.”
“We encourage tenants to do as much for themselves as they possibly can. And the new laundry room means they can do their own washing. The double cookers means they can cook separate meals, affording greater choice. We help tenants to grocery shop, cook and clean – they also do their own washing up, even if it means placing a basin on a table for the tenants who are in chairs – everyone is involved.