The Gables Rest Home

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by The Gables Rest Home's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from The Gables Rest Home is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles
Highlighting best practice
Care Co-ordinator
The front of Gables
Rest Home
The Gables Care Home is an autism and learning disabilities
specialist based in Alford, Lincolnshire, that was established
by Dominique Pennington in 2000, alongside her two sons
Jean-Pierre and Michael. Gables is a rest home that cares for nine
adults who are supported by eight full-time members of staff.
Dominique, a qualified nurse, is always available to her residents
and discusses how their small size enables them to provide a far
more personalised experience for their residents, which allows
them to experience happier and more independent lives.
Having faced discrimination and isolation myself, founding Gables was very
much a personal challenge. I wanted to give people a voice that had previously
been ignored. Autism is much more common than many people think, and there
are around 700,000 people on the autism spectrum in the UK – that’s more
than one in 100. If you include their families, autism is a part of daily life for
Seventy per cent of autistic adults say that they are not getting the help they need
from social services, while 70 per cent have also told us that with more support
they would feel less isolated. After spending 22 years as a nurse, I decided to put
the knowledge I had developed to use in the residential care sector, with a special
focus on autism.
We are based on one acre of land and offer a clear example of the UK care
sector model envisioned by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). This model
focuses on smaller, community-based homes, which are often in a family setting.
»Care Co-ordinator: Dominique
»Established in 2000
»Based in Alford, Lincolnshire
»No. of employees: 8
»Services: Rest home for
individuals with autism and
complex learning disabilities
The Gables Rest
This encapsulates the modern and
forward-thinking nature of the care
market, which has moved away from
larger institutions that cannot offer
individuals with learning disabilities the
same family feel and personalised help.
Our ethos
Our aim is to allow individuals with all
levels of learning disabilities to live a
fulfilled life without barriers. We have
an ethos that works in tandem with
our value for money (VFM) principles,
which create savings, reduce waste
and increase efficiency without
compromising quality.
Our principal strategy for people in our
care is defined by our four principles,
which are adhered to by all of our
staff. Firstly, we believe in everyone’s
right to life. Individuals with learning
disabilities should be empowered with
the right to control as many aspects
of their daily life as possible. We
mainly provide support on a one-to-
one basis, which builds confidence in
our residents. Once we have listened
to an individual’s feelings, we then
present them with all their options.
This coincides with rights established
under the Mental Capacity Act 2005
and the UN Convention on the Rights
of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
Secondly, we want to enable
independent living. We currently
have four properties registered for
supported living based in Spilsby town.
This allows any of our residents who
are prepared to leave residential care
the freedom to live independently at
an appropriate location of their choice.
Thirdly, we provide residents control of
their life. Once an individual has been
prepared for independent life and has
access and support to pursue their own
interests, we believe they can begin
to truly control their own life. Our
independent living properties provide
residents with the independence they
need, while being close to facilities
Lastly, we allow residents the chance
to experience social inclusion. When
a person has been given more control
of their life, they begin to feel socially
included in the local community.
This can be as simple as accessing
shops, transport, activities and leisure.
Most activities in a residential setting
encourage group participation with
other residents. Social inclusion
encourages and supports new personal
relationships that engage with the
wider community.
Organisational methods
All our residents have a unique
opportunity to train in our independent
living unit, where we can teach them
to do simple things such as pick up
a magazine they want to read, or
show them how to live on their own.
This area adjoins the main house and
is fully self-contained with its own
kitchen, bathroom and living room. By
providing a unit where residents can
learn and develop their skills, however
basic, we show our commitment
to supporting adults with learning
disabilities in their right to choose.
A separate unit on our grounds houses
the education, training and activity
centre. Residents can pursue their
Caring and dedicated
Our principal
strategy for
people in our
care is defined
by our four
which are
adhered to by
all of our staff
Highlighting best practice
educational needs, which may later
allow them to engage in employment,
or just further their personal
Our structure is based on a horizontally
integrated, three-tier system. Phase
one focuses on residential care, phase
two on supported living training, and
phase three on independent living.
By offering all of the options to an
individual, they are empowered to
make their own choices, progress and
become independent.
Financial challenges
Non-NHS public funding for adults
with care needs is around £50 billion
annually. As care providers, we have
a duty to operate using our VFM
principles and reduce the high costs
associated with the sector. To cut
costs, we began using microeconomic
modelling techniques, applying those
methods to reduce our costs by
increasing efficiency.
When operating at full capacity,
smaller providers achieve economies
of scale. Through our own
independent research, we found that
smaller providers within our county
can offer a saving of £16,432 per
annum on complex placements over
that of larger institutions. This saving
is considerably larger when compared
to NHS inpatient placements. The
under-utilisation of available services
may debilitate their effectiveness
when competing with large
institutions. This would be detrimental
to service users and reduce the
ability to capitalise on budget-saving
Spending in the adult healthcare
sector is falling, but the population is
ageing and growing. A comprehensive
spending review is sorely needed
to return funding in health, care
and local government services to a
Always improving our service
The families of our residents have
given us great feedback, but we
are passionate about continuing to
evolve and improve our service. Family
members have been brought to tears
when witnessing the progress our
residents have made, some of whom
could not go outside alone or hold their
own drink prior to arriving withus.
By continuing to enable adults with
complex learning difficulties and
giving them back their independence,
we will be achieving the goal I had
when I set out in residential care 18
years ago. To do this, though, we will
need the continued commitment and
support of our staff, as well as further
innovation that enables us to improve
our services.
Spending in
the adult
sector is
falling, but the
population is
ageing and
Our spacious dining

This article was sponsored by The Gables Rest Home. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from The Rt Hon Theresa May MP.

The Rt Hon Theresa May MP's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By The Rt Hon Theresa May MP

This foreword from the then Prime Minister appeared in the 2018/19 Parliamentary Review.

British politics provides ample material for analysis in the pages of The Parliamentary Review. For Her Majesty’s Government, our task in the year ahead is clear: to achieve the best Brexit deal for Britain and to carry on our work to build a more prosperous and united country – one that truly works for everyone. 

The right Brexit deal will not be sufficient on its own to secure a more prosperous future for Britain. We also need to ensure that our economy is ready for what tomorrow will bring. Our Modern Industrial Strategy is our plan to do that. It means Government stepping up to secure the foundations of our productivity: providing an education system that delivers the skills our economy needs, improving school standards and transforming technical education; delivering infrastructure for growth; ensuring people have the homes they need in the places they want to live. It is all about taking action for the long-term that will pay dividends in the future.

But it also goes beyond that. Government, the private sector and academia working together as strategic partners achieve far more than we could separately. That is why we have set an ambitious goal of lifting UK public and private research and development investment to 2.4 per cent of GDP by 2027. It is why we are developing four Grand Challenges, the big drivers of social and economic change in the world today: harnessing artificial intelligence and the data revolution; leading in changes to the future of mobility; meeting the challenges of our ageing society; and driving ahead the revolution in clean growth. By focusing our efforts on making the most of these areas of enormous potential, we can develop new exports, grow new industries and create more good jobs in every part of our country.

Years of hard work and sacrifice from the British people have got our deficit down by over three quarters. We are building on this success by taking a balanced approach to public spending. We are continuing to deal with our debts, so that our economy can remain strong and we can protect people’s jobs, and at the same time we are investing in vital public services, like our NHS. We have set out plans to increase NHS funding annually by an average by 3.4 percent in real terms: that is £394 million a week more. In return, the NHS will produce a ten-year plan, led by doctors and nurses, to eliminate waste and improve patient care.

I believe that Britain can look to the future with confidence. We are leaving the EU and setting a new course for prosperity as a global trading nation. We have a Modern Industrial Strategy that is strengthening the foundations of our economy and helping us to seize the opportunities of the future. We are investing in the public services we all rely on and helping them to grow and improve. Building on our country’s great strengths – our world-class universities and researchers, our excellent services sector, our cutting edge manufacturers, our vibrant creative industries, our dedicated public servants – we can look towards a new decade that is ripe with possibility. The government I lead is doing all it can to make that brighter future a reality for everyone in our country. 

British politics provides ample material for analysis in the pages of The Parliamentary Review 
The Rt Hon Theresa May MP
Prime Minister