Priory View receives Royal seal of approval
11 April 2017
Our award-winning independent living scheme, Priory View, has been officially opened by HM The Queen.
Her Majesty was accompanied by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh at the scheme in Dunstable today (Tuesday, 11 April).
HM The Queen and His Royal Highness visited the home of Pauline Stainsby – one of the 83 state-of-the-art apartments at Priory View – during a tour of the building and also had the chance to speak with residents taking part in some of the numerous activities on offer and enjoying the many different facilities available at the Church Street development.
Following lunch with residents and invited guests, Her Majesty officially opened the building before she and The Duke of Edinburgh were presented with a posy and a gift by Priory View’s oldest residents George Baker, 93, a former Royal Navy serviceman, and Angela Greene.
Councillor David Bowater, Chairman of Central Bedfordshire Council, was among those presented to the royal party on their arrival at Priory View.
He said: “It has been a terrific honour for Priory View to be chosen for a royal visit and everyone who lives and works here has been delighted and excited to be part of the day.
“With a visit to Whipsnade Zoo too, HM The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh have been able to see some of the brilliant things which Central Bedfordshire has to offer residents of all ages.”
Ruhelly Begum, scheme manager for Priory View, said: “Her Majesty and His Royal Highness made it very clear in advance of their visit that they were particularly interested in meeting residents of this fantastic scheme.
“Some of them have been living at Priory View for up to a year and it is that they are still just as enthusiastic about their home and everything it has to offer as the day they moved in.
“The close-knit community which has formed here in such a short time is amazing, and I think that was evident to HM The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh as they went around the building.”
Pauline Stainsby was honoured to meet Her Majesty for the first time. She said: “It was wonderful. She was so gracious – almost ordinary in a way, isn’t she? She was just lovely to talk to. She went into the bedroom and saw the kitchen and lounge and then went on to the balcony as well.
“I got to speak with the Duke of Edinburgh too. I didn’t have a conversation as such but he was very, very charming. I can’t believe I have seen them!”
She added: “I have been living at Priory View since the end of October. My husband joined me in late November but unfortunately he wasn’t well enough and we lost him on 1 January.
“I like it here – people are absolutely lovely. You can just go and sit with them and chat with them if you are feeling lonely – or not. Once I got over the shock of losing my husband I enjoy going and mixing with other people and we have some good laughs.”