Two best friends were over the moon when they found out they were also to become next door neighbours at a Rothley care home.
Pals Mariam Forman, 92, and Una Markham, 79, were fearful they may become separated when the care home where they were living closed down.
But the friends were ecstatic to hear that not only were they moving together to Mountview care home in Rothley, but that home manager Stacie Weaver had managed to find them adjacent rooms.
The new neighbours celebrated on their first morning with a special candlelit breakfast for two, which Una compared to ‘the Ritz.’
The friends, though 13 years apart in age, share a similar sense of humour, a rural Leicestershire childhood and a strong work ethic throughout their younger lives.
Mariam previously owned Whitehouse Farm in Stapleton, with her husband John, to whom she was married for 57 years, until he passed away in 2007. She worked on the farm for over 40 years, where they produced cereal, poultry and eggs. She has one child, two grandchildren and one great grandchild.
Una was born in Bagworth and lived in Queniborough with her husband Jeffrey for over 40 years, until he passed away in 2008. She worked in light engineering.
Stacie Weaver, home manager, at Mountview,, said: “Una and Mariam’s friendship is very special and we are delighted to be able to help it to continue. They have not known each other for very long – only a matter of months – but it’s obvious to everyone how deep their friendship runs and how much they enjoy each other’s company.
“To be able to bring them to Mountview and keep their friendship strong means the world to us.”
Una said: “When I saw my bedroom I couldn’t believe it – it was very posh!
“Our candlelit breakfast with music, looking out over the gardens was like being at the Ritz.
“We are settling in very well together.”
Mariam said: “It’s just perfect. Everyone is so friendly and prompt. I don’t need to press my call bell. It’s such a lovely place. What have we done to deserve this?
“It’s very different here and that’s all I can really say. Everyone is so nice.
“And the tablecloths are such a nice touch – the last time we had tablecloths was at Christmas!”