A pioneering care organisation is celebrating a major milestone for the quality of the service it provides.
Pendine Park was the first nursing home in the UK to be awarded a British quality mark 25 years ago.
The British Standard 5750 award was presented in 1993 by the then Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Wales Gwilym Jones.
A quarter of a century it’s been replaced by the ISO 9000 award which Pendine Park also holds.
The company was founded in 1985 by Mario Kreft MBE and his wife, Gill.
They established the Gwern Alyn care home in Wrexham after being unable to find anywhere that met their high standards for their own grandparents.
The organisation now runs eight care homes in Wrexham and Caernarfon as well as newly-opened luxury care apartments in Caernarfon.
Last year Pendine invested £250,000 in massively refurbishing an 8,000 square foot building on Wrexham Technology Park where they are now training the social care professionals of the future.
Pride of place goes to the Pendine Academy of Social Care which includes the ground-breaking new virtual training centre featuring totally realistic recreations of a residents’ lounge, bedroom and dining area.
In total the organisation now employs more than 800 peoples across the region.
Pendine invited Wrexham AM Lesley Griffiths, who is also the Welsh Assembly Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs, to help them celebrate the unique landmark in providing quality care.
Mr Kreft said: “My wife Gill and I started Pendine Park 33 years ago and we were exceptionally proud to become the first nursing home to be achieve the British Standard 5750 award when it was presented by Gwilym Jones in 1993.
“In achieving the award we took a structured approach as we needed to demonstrate we were really delivering exceptional care.
“It helped us to set up and deliver our training academy which is so important in helping us deliver excellence in all we strive to achieve.”
He added: “It also helped us to develop our own systems of care planning. We have gone onto develop those systems further and what that has done is ensure we are, as an organisation, fit for the future.
“It’s very important to us that the people we care for and their families have confidence in what we do and how we deliver care.”
Lesley Griffiths AM says holding the British Standard for 25 years is a wonderful achievement.
She said: “To be the first nursing home to achieve the British Standard was remarkable enough but to maintain and improve on that standard over a quarter of a century since is amazing.
“It’s really apt that we are here celebrating this achievement here in Pendine Park’s amazing new Wrexham training academy which I had the pleasure of officially opening alongside my colleague Ken Skates AM.”
She added: “I know that Mario and Gill and all their staff are committed to ensuring the next generation of care providers are able to access the very best training and professional development available.
“I’m so pleased we have a care organisation such as Pendine Park here in North Wales. There is no doubt the organisation is a beacon of good practice and I know it will continue to go from strength to strength.”