Perran Bay History

Cornwall Old Peoples Housing Society.

The Beginning

The older part of Perran Bay Home, known as the ‘Annexe’ was built around 1898, by Tom Tremewan and later sold to Mr. Lee of Plymouth. A hotel was then added to the site. It would appear from records that Mr. House bought the hotel between

1935 – 1939 and during the war, billeted Canadian and American troops.

During 1948 a Sub-Committee of the Council of Social Services for Cornwall, concerned with Care of the Elderly, decided that a Housing Society be founded.

Chaired by Mrs. Mary F. Williams, a search for a suitable property began. Houses were visited in Redruth, Camborne, St. Austell, Liskeard, St Day, Launceston and Bude. However according to records at the time ‘the path always seemed impeded’.

Perran Bay Home was opened on the 1st January 1949 by The Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall, Lieutenant Colonel E.H. W. Bolitho. The Art editor of The Times arrived to arrange for photographs, to which the back page of the Times was devoted the next day.

During 1949, Perran Bay Home continued to meet the need of Elderly people where they might be accommodated at a reasonable charge, and from three residents initially, the number rose steadily to twenty by the end of the year.

The appointment of Mrs Williams from Paignton as Assistant Warden in April 1950, was at a salary of £130.00 per annum.

As the number of residents increased, the Committee of Management considered improving the amenities and facilities at the Home. Heating was installed in the dining room, three lounges and nineteen bedrooms, whilst the whole building was wired so that additional heaters could be installed as required.
As Cornwall County Council had a considerable waiting list of suitable persons unable to pay the normal charge of ‘three pounds per week’ and there being vacant accommodation at Perran Bay Home, representations were made to the County Council to recognise the home under the National Assistance Act 1948. The Society would retain the right to have the final word in the selection of residents and also to give them notice to leave if they were found to be unsuitable.
Dr. Mabel Andrews succeeded as Chairman in 1981 followed by Dr. Tom Watson, Kenneth Hyde, Mrs. Pat Mathews, Alan Wilkes, Tim Church, David Hancock, Ken Yeo and the current chairman for the second time David Hancock.
The same values and principles that were set in 1949 are still adhered to at Perran Bay today.

Information sources: Gwendroc Paper number 6 – Rev John Pearce MBE, Courtney Library. Royal Institution of Cornwall: Cornwall Old Peoples Housing Society Ltd. Minutes – County Records Office.