Monday, 21 June 2021

Residents say goodbye as manager moves

THE manager of a Henley retirement village has resigned after eight years.

Rhona Smith, 54, who was village manager at Thamesfield in Wargrave Road, is to take up a new job in Hampshire.

Residents held a leaving party for Mrs Smith, where they presented her with a card and John Lewis vouchers and toasted her with champagne.

Mrs Smith, who celebrated her wedding at Thamesfield in 2012, said: “I’ve enjoyed every single minute working here. It’s been like having lots of mums and dads and everyone has been so kind.

“I couldn’t have wished for a better place to work. It’s been brilliant and I’ve had lots of fun. I’m very sad to be leaving, it’s like a big family here and everyone knows everyone else.”

Resident Liz Edmonds said: “She’s very friendly, very funny, and ran the place really well. If any problems arose they were sorted quickly and she was a big reason why everyone got on so well. I shall miss her a great deal and I think most people here will too.

“However, she has got a new challenge and as much as we would like her to stay we can’t force her to.” Maintenance officer James Unwin added: “She’s very much the joker and she will be sorely missed.

“She knew how to deal with every individual here and knew every resident on a personal basis.”

Mrs Smith’s new job is at the new Hampshire Lakes retirement village in Yateley, near her Winnersh home. The home, which is run by Anchor, will open in the spring.

Mrs Smith said: “I saw the job advertised and it was at the right time in the right place so I went for it. Now I can pull all my old pranks on new people!

“I’d like to come back to Thamesfield from time to time to see everyone but I wouldn’t want to step on anyone’s toes.”

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