The homes' Activity Co-ordinator along with the rest of the team at Grace Care Centre, operated by The Orders of St John Care Trust, discovered that resident Ernie had a love and passion for football after discussing her son playing football at Thornbury Town.

Back in the 1970’s Ernie was the manager of the same club and also been a supporting fan, coach and role model.

Reminiscing about his football days, Ernie harboured a secret request which was to meet with football idol Harry Rednapp. Emma Cave, the homes' Activity Co-ordinator along with the rest of the team at Grace Care Centre put on their thinking caps on how to make this possible.

An opportunity arose in the form of an evening hosted by the BAWA Healthcare and Leisure with an audience with Harry Redknapp. Members and local supporters were able to spend the evening engaging with one of the country’s most loved Premier League Football managers (alongside being King of the Jungle!).

Not only was Ernie an avid supporter of West Ham United Football Club but he professionally worked with Michael Carrick’s father who he gave a day off to take his young son, Michael, for a football trial which hopefully helped to start his career!

During a Question and Answer session, Mr Redknapp upon hearing this fact, was adamant in his thanks to Ernie. He also kindly signed Ernie’s book with a personal message and posed for photos.

Ernie comments of the evening: “It was an amazing night and I had such a great time. Emma was brilliant in helping to organise this!”

As the Thornbury FC members were seated in the row in front, they extended an invitation to Ernie to visit their ground for their upcoming fixtures against local rivals Tytherington Rocks FC.

Our employees are dedicated to our residents and it is very fulfilling to see them so happy and to be able to initiate experiences and support their wishes.