The sun came out and the community rocked up to Balhousie Luncarty’s summer fete, an event that was hugely welcomed after a challenging two years of visiting restrictions.

There was barely a parking space to be had at the Perthshire home as relatives and friends of Balhousie Luncarty joined residents and staff for an afternoon party in the gardens.

Dundee musician Paul Sullivan, a Balhousie Care Group regular, provided entertainment, singing classics by Elvis, Frank Sinatra and the Bay City Rollers.

There were games and activities, food tasting and dancing, a raffle and goody bags.

Chefs Katie Burns and Miles Pennock got busy in the kitchen, baking everything from home-made bread to cookies for the bake sale, which raised more than £250 for the residents’ fund.

But the event was bittersweet; it was also a farewell party for Luncarty’s Home Manager Cheryl Banks who has moved to the Manager role at Balhousie St Ronan’s in Dundee.

Cheryl gave an emotional speech in which she thanked staff, residents and relatives for their support during her time there. “I’m so proud of the staff here – you families are in great hands, there is so much love and care at this home,” said Cheryl of her Luncarty team.

Sharing in her pride was none other than Cheryl’s former school rector, Brian Foley. Brian spent 15 years at St. Saviour’s RC High School in Dundee as deputy rector and rector before retiring in 2003. Brian lives in Perth and his wife Pat moved to Balhousie Luncarty in January this year.

When the two got chatting in-depth at the summer fete, he and Cheryl made the connection that they had known each other decades earlier.

Says Cheryl: “I left school at 15 to go to further education and begin my career in care. I hadn’t seen Mr Foley since. For us to make that connection at my leaving do was such a brilliant coincidence, and made a very special and emotional day even more special.”

Brian said: “Cheryl and I got talking about Dundee, where she is from, and I just happened to mention I had spent 25 years working there, including at St Saviour’s. That’s when the penny dropped for us.

He added: “It’s great to see how far Cheryl has progressed in her career. I’m really impressed by what the staff do at Luncarty, particularly with their activities and relatives’ newsletter.”

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