Call us on 01825 713022

Home » Events » The Health and Social Care Champion for East Sussex

The Health and Social Care Champion for East Sussex

Name of care home: Brooklands, Wych Cross, Forest Row, RH18 5JN

Date and time of visit: 30 January 2017

 Names of authorised representatives: Margaret Stanton and Chris Marks

  1. Introduction

 Healthwatch is the independent consumer champion created to gather and represent the views of the public on issues relating to health and social care. We have a legal footing, as we were created under the Health and Social Care Act. Part of our responsibilities is to ‘enter and view’ health and social care establishments and services, to seek the views and experiences of people receiving a service.

The focus of the visits was twofold:

  1. The degree to which residents were involved in the choice of care home.
  2. The level and ways in which residents are actively supported and enabled to make choices and decisions and to be as independent as possible.

This visit was part of a programme of visits to care homes, numbering in total between 40 and 50 care homes. An overarching report will be written on general conclusions from all these visits and made public on our website.


  1. What we did

 We spoke with the manager, the owner and a number of residents. We also had a look around the care home. We also met with a visitor.

  1. What we saw

 We saw a residential care home in idyllic surroundings at Ashdown Forest. It was comfortable and furnished in an appropriate yet homely manner. There were no hazards seen and new flooring had recently been installed.

There was a friendly, happy service where the manager and other long serving staff provide a safe and effective service. There was good communication between management and carers.

There were pleasant individual rooms and various lounges and dining rooms which were appropriately furnished and colourful. Bedrooms have en suite facilities.   

 Activities were organised and included one to one for those residents who do not leave their bedrooms. We saw the menu on display with this including ingredients for those people with allergies.

We observed that staff answered the call bells promptly 

  1. What people told us 

The manager explained that about ten new residents had moved into the care home in the last six months. Either the resident or a relative visited prior to moving in. We were told that residents can bring in their own possessions except beds, which the home supplies, as they are specialist beds. The GP visits every Monday.

Staffs were welcoming and we were told that they work well as a team. There was a good sense of training and teamwork, with plans for the future. Residents have free access to all areas of the care home, including the garden.

Residents told us that they enjoyed the food and that there was a good choice.

One resident confirmed that she had been actively involved in the decision to move into the care home, although she was unable to visit herself, her family did so.

Comments from residents included:

  • I can go anywhere with help. I get up and go to bed anytime. I spend the day making cards.
  • Staff there when you need them.
  • I like the food.
  • Staff excellent

A relative was met with. They said that they had looked at three possible care homes but chose this one. “This is so nice you can tell the minute you come in”. This person also stated “the care is excellent” 

  1. Conclusions

 Residents and the visitor were very pleased with the standard of care. Some described the staff as “excellent”. They confirmed that they are able to make their own decisions on many areas of their lives. Many staff have worked at the care home for many years and so this helps consistency of care. The environment is good and safe.