Letchworth golfer living with kidney disease and vascular dementia takes to the course again

Letchworth's Ian Aitken on the driving range at Chesfield Downs Golf Club in Graveley. Picture: Home

Letchworth's Ian Aitken on the driving range at Chesfield Downs Golf Club in Graveley. Picture: Home Instead - Credit: Archant

A keen golfer from Letchworth who feared his health may stop him ever playing again is now swinging his clubs once more with the support of his carer.

Letchworth's Ian Aitken at the 19th hole at Chesfield Downs Golf Club in Graveley. Picture: Home Ins

Letchworth's Ian Aitken at the 19th hole at Chesfield Downs Golf Club in Graveley. Picture: Home Instead - Credit: Archant

Ian Aitken, who lives with kidney disease and vascular dementia, regularly goes to Chesfield Downs Golf & Country Club in Graveley to hit balls on the driving range.

His carer Peter Butterfield decided to help his wish come true after hearing about his love of sport and golf in particular, and realising how much it would mean for him to play again.

During their last visit Ian hit 50 balls on the driving range.

Dave Marsh, owner of Home Instead Senior Care – Peter’s employers – said the firm works with many clients living with dementia and understands the challenges they can face.


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“We know that Ian is often tired after playing, but he is just so happy,” said Dave.

“It’s wonderful to see the joy in his face. He loves every minute.

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“He also likes to take tea at the 19th hole, a tradition held by most golfers. It’s truly wonderful what he has been able to do.

“At Home Instead many of our clients are living with dementia, so we understand the challenges they can face. Peter has not only been able to support Ian but also his wife, Val – helping her to be able to spend more time with Ian.”

Ian has also received support from Garden House Hospice Care in Letchworth’s Gillison Close – where he has been having help with physiotherapy and exercise, and support from the nursing and palliative clinical care team.

The team at the hospice have a great relationship with Ian and Val, and they have encouraged him all the way.

Dave said: “In our day-to-day work at Home Instead we often work closely with the hospice, and we are so impressed by the tremendous work they do for the community.”

Garden House Hospice Care provides a wide range of services for patients, their carers, and families facing a life-limiting illness.

The hospice needs to raise over £3.2 million in total income every year so that they can run their services for people in North Hertfordshire, Stevenage and surrounding villages.

To find out more about Home Instead Senior Care and Garden House Hospice Care, see homeinstead.co.uk/stevenage and ghhospicecare.org.uk.

You can also call Home Instead on 01462 600462, or the hospice on 01462 679540.

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