101-year-old's lifelong wish to become Beaver comes true in Hemel Hempstead

A 101-year-old Hemel woman, who harboured a secret lifelong desire to join the Beavers group, saw her wish finally come true thanks to care home staff.

Monday, 23rd December 2019, 10:32 am
Updated Monday, 23rd December 2019, 1:22 pm

Pip Peek, who has lived in St Pauls Care Centre for the last six years, at last confided in care staff about her unusual ambition.

The pensioner told staff “I wish I could be a Beaver but I’m too old”.

Pip's request is unusual because beavers are the first and youngest section of the Scout Group. Beaver Scouts are typically aged between six and eight-years-old.

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101-year-old Pip Peek with the rest of her Beaver group. Credit: Westgate Healthcare

However, the care home has a wishing tree where residents’ wishes are hung up and granted, so staff spoke to the leader of a Beaver group in Hemel Hempstead to see if the centenarian could become an honorary member of the Beavers.

Proving that age really was no barrier, the 2nd Hemel Hempstead (Grovehill) Beaver Scouts turned up at Pip’s bedside to present the centenarian with a bright yellow neckerchief.

The Beavers then gave her a full group salute to make her an honorary member of their group.

Pip Peak is ecstatic about being made a member of local Beaver group. Credit: Westgate Healthcare

Ms Peek said: “I can’t believe my wish has come true. You’re all so lovely, how wonderful.”

Beavers typically enjoy all that scouting has to offer; being introduced to lots of outdoor activities, having the opportunity to be creative, exploring their local community and experiencing the excitement of a Beaver Scout sleepover with friends.

The Beavers also sang Christmas carols and handed out decorations and handmade Christmas cards to each of the residents at the care home.

Beth Marchant-Roe, head of activities at St Pauls Care Centre, which is run by Westgate Healthcare, said: “The Beavers bring so much energy to the home and it is infectious, they encourage the residents to break out of their shells by singing, chatting and even exercising with them.

“Our residents with dementia really enjoy the reminiscence they get from talking about their family and children, it’s always lovely to see.”