Life at our Southwood Court retirement home

Jeanette McQuilliam

Southwood Court is our purpose built retirement home in Basildon, Essex. We spoke to Home Manager Jeanette, about what residents can expect and why it’s such a good place to live. 

What makes Southwood Court unique?

Southwood is set in a wonderful location amongst adjoining woodlands, with an abundance of wildlife in the grounds.

But it’s more than a building, it’s a caring and safe environment, where those retired from print and associated trades, or their relatives, can live independently.  There’s an on-site team that’s here to help and we conduct daily welfare checks so our residents can enjoy a happy, healthy retirement.

What do you think people get from living at Southwood that they may not get in other retirement developments?

At Southwood we really focus on building a community, and the team pride themselves in going above and beyond what might be expected. For instance we love surprising our residents with little treats to their door, like chocolate eggs, flowers and hot cross buns at Easter; cream teas; and movie night goodie bags.

As part of the Printing Charity, we’re also able to offer additional support, including access to the charity’s free of charge helpline for all residents, providing practical, emotional and financial support; and financial assistance where eligible.

Tell us a bit about the activities you put on for residents

Southwood has large communal areas which are perfect for getting together with old and new friends. We put on a range of activities to guarantee there’s something for everyone, although there’s no pressure to join in if you don’t want to. Our residents also regularly arrange group activities themselves, which is great. All new residents are welcomed with a tea, coffee and cake get-together, so everyone has a chance to get to know each other. Then, there’s a weekly breakfast club; weekend take-away evenings; Christmas activities; meals with singers and entertainers; games like darts, bingo and quizzes; a walking club; chair-based exercise sessions; ‘knit and natter’… I’m proud that the list really does go on.

Southwood residents are a charitable bunch, holding fundraisers throughout the year to raise donations for various charities – and these always include food and drink!

If someone’s thinking of moving into Southwood, what would you say to them?

First and foremost, they’ll be made to feel very welcome by all. We understand that moving into retirement accommodation may take some getting used to, but the team and other residents are here to help, and the end outcome will make the upheaval worthwhile. You’ll be living in a truly pleasant environment: the flats themselves really are exceptional, and we take great pride in looking after the building and the grounds.

There are currently vacancies at Southwood Court. To arrange to look around or discuss your circumstances, please contact our welfare team on 01293 542820 or email

Find more information about our retirement developments.

Get in touch

If you, or someone you know needs support, or you’d like to know more about our free, confidential helpline, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

To find out more give us a call on 01293 542 820
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