Friday May 26, 2022


Liz Thomson, believed to be the country’s oldest care worker, has been honoured in two parliamentary motions lodged with the Scottish Parliament.

Liz, 81, who works at Balhousie Huntly care home, was congratulated for her “dedication to caring” by Alexander Burnett, Scottish Conservative MSP for Aberdeenshire West, in a motion supported by 26 other MSPs. Mr Burnett lodged a separate motion congratulating Liz on a recent s1jobs Recruitment Award which she won for her work as an Activities Coordinator at Balhousie Huntly.

“At 81 years old, Liz continues to create top-quality activity programmes for the residents in her care, some of whom are younger than she is,” said the second motion, lodged this month in the Scottish Parliament.

Liz, whose story of being a busy octogenarian care worker has been captured by newspapers and TV stations nationwide, received a visit from Mr Burnett this week.

Balhousie Huntly Home Manager Sarah Omand said: “This truly is Liz’s year. She has received such well-deserved attention for the amazing work she does here at Balhousie Huntly, where she keeps residents as busy and active as she is and delivers the sort of person-centred care the care home is renowned for. It helps that, being a local, Liz has known some of the residents for many years. Mr Burnett’s acknowledgement of Liz through these parliamentary motions is the cherry on the cake. On behalf of the whole home, we would like to thank him for this recognition.”

Alexander Burnett MSP said: “I was delighted to be able to present Liz with the two motions I lodged in Parliament in recent months recognising her exceptional dedication to caring and being awarded the Shona McKenzie Shine Award at the s1jobs Recruitment Awards.

“To continue working with such vigour at her age is truly remarkable and I know is greatly appreciated by residents and staff alike at Balhousie.”

Born in Portsoy, Liz worked in hospitality for many years and even ran her own hotel in the rural village of Rhynie before joining the Balhousie Huntly family when the home opened in 2012. The care home is one of 26 care facilities run by the award-winning Balhousie Care Group, which is celebrating its 30th year in business.

Liz is humble about her impact at the care home. It’s all just ‘every day’ to her. “I have tried retiring before,” Liz explains, “but I like working!” Liz has worked in many roles at Balhousie Huntly including in the laundry team, kitchen and domestic teams, but she loves her role in the activities team most. “I really enjoy the time I spend with the residents. I’ve known some of them for ten years now, so organising and leading activities is always enjoyable.”

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Photo caption: Liz Thomson of Balhousie Huntly care home receives her Parliamentary Motion certificates from Alexander Burnett MSP.

Notes to Editors

About Balhousie Care Group

Balhousie Care Group was formed 30 years ago to fill a gap in quality residential care in North East Scotland. Today, with 26 homes in the area, it is one of the leading providers of care for the elderly in Scotland, providing care to over 900 residents.

Balhousie Care prides itself on its person-centred approach to care. Putting people right at the forefront of everything they do; it’s inclusive of everyone. They capture this philosophy through the roll out of ‘Together We’re Great’, an initiative which recognises the skills, talents, attributes and support areas for each and every person involved in the organisation. Together We’re Great aims to value individuality and promote excellence across the organisation.

A Participation Charter – a first-of-its-kind in the care home sector – commits to residents getting a bigger say than ever in the care they receive, from writing care home policies to recruiting staff.

Balhousie Care Group is the recipient of numerous awards. These include three Scottish Care Awards, a 2021 Great British Care Award, 2022 s1Jobs Recruitment Award, 2019 Growth Business and 2018 Service Business of the Year at The Courier Business Awards, 2019 Growth Business of the Year Perthshire Chamber of Commerce STAR Award, and SME Scotland Business Man of the Year 2019 for Chairman Tony Banks.