STAFF at two Hampshire care homes have beaten off stiff national competition at an awards ceremony last month.

Grace Adan, manager of residential care home Oak Lodge in Oakley, was named care home manager of the year while Fay Kirrage was announced as carer of the year for her work at Rowan Lodge in Hook.

The pair collected their accolades at the National Care Awards held on Friday, November 29, at the Hilton London Metropole.

Judges described Grace as “passionate and warm”. They said: “Grace Adan takes as much care of her staff as she does her residents. The judges were wowed by Grace’s passion, humility and warmth. Not only is Grace an ambassador for best practice in her care home. After 18 years of service, Grace wins this national award for her outstanding home”

While Fay was given the top title as carer of the year due to her ability to continuously go “above and beyond” her role. Judges said: “She is a naturally gifted carer whose passion and warmth shone through. Fay goes over and above every day, without even realising it. The knowledge that she has in terms of nutrition and hydration was impressive, as well as her initiatives for encouraging residents to be involved in their care and wellbeing. A real ambassador for outstanding care for the elderly.”

Both work for Forest Care, a Basingstoke-based chain that owns a number of nursing and respite centres across Hampshire. In total, the firm had 16 members of staff in finalist positions at the awards, winning six prizes in total.

A spokesman for the company said: “We are constantly striving to innovate the care it provides to its residents. An important part of this is continually updating each of the care homes’ facilities along with providing engaging training to its staff.”