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Hampden House care home, Harrogate, wins national catering award

Care dine with me

care home kitchenThe winner of this year’s Care Dine With Me competition – and the recipient of the generous £5,000 cash first prize – has been announced as Hampden House, Harrogate part of the Elizabeth Finn Homes group.

The initiative, brought to the industry by Care Home Catering magazine in partnership with Kerrymaid and Bidfood, seeks to find the care home with the best ‘whole food, whole care’ approach. The judges were genuinely impressed by the lengths all our finalists go to in order to enhance the mealtime experience on a daily basis and to ensure that good food and hydration is seamlessly integrated into their care home’s ‘whole care’ approach.

From a strong list of contenders Hampden House in Harrogate stood out as a worthy winner. Head Chef Debbie McCormack has worked at the 65-bed Harrogate home for 22 years and the warm relationship she has with her residents is exemplary. Nothing is too much trouble for the catering team and Debbie loves getting recipe suggestions from residents which she then puts on as a ‘special of the day’.

Debbie puts the same amount of passion into the food she cooks for palliative care, people suffering from dysphagia and those at risk of malnutrition, giving everyone the chance to enjoy tasty, home cooked meals. Theme days, regular tasting sessions, a baking club and the popular Dine with the Team initiative are all part of life’s rich pageant at Hampden House, where residents can’t praise the food highly enough.

Said Debbie:

“I wasn’t expecting to win at all! We are all over the moon; it’s good recognition of what we do here as a team.” She is planning on putting the prize money towards a big summerhouse in the grounds, where residents will be able to gather for afternoon tea (with freshly baked cake!) as well as activities such as growing herbs, which can then be used in the kitchen.”

Aine Melichar, Kerrymaid Brand Manager comments:

“Each care home genuinely incorporated food into their whole care approach and really showcased how it can improve the lives of everyone in the home including staff. “However, there could only be one winner, and we were pleased to crown Hampden House in Harrogate our 2017 winner. Head chef Debbie McCormack really inspired us, having worked at Hampden House for 22 years there was no request from residents that she wouldn’t try to meet. We want to say a massive congratulations to Hampden House, and well done also to our runners up, Halliwell in Tunbridge Wells, Rashwood in Droitwitch (both also part of the Elizabeth Finn Homes group) and Sunrise of Eastbourne who showed an enormous amount of passion and dedication to their residents.”