Coach trip to Waddesdon Manor

On Wednesday 11th July, the Ray Collins Charitable Trust organised their third annual coach trip for local people living in isolation.

The Trust hired a coach and booked tickets for a fantastic day out at Waddesdon Manor which included touring the gardens, Manor House and then afternoon tea for all.

A fantastic day for 41 local people

The coach arrived in Wantage Market Place at 9.15am, followed shortly by several drivers whom Ray had dispatched to collect the less mobile guests.

The more mobile guests walked to the Market Place and Ray checked everyone on to the coach. The Trust had borrowed several wheelchairs to help those who couldn’t manage a lot of walking, and these along with several walking frames were loaded into the coach.

Stirling’s Elderly Care were also invited and several residents plus four carers joined the trip, along with two extra carers from Day and Night Assistance.

The group enjoyed tea and coffee on arrival at Waddesdon. Then at midday the group split into two groups to tour the house. Everyone marvelled at the elegance and opulence on display in all the rooms.

The spiral staircase proved a challenge too far for the wheelchairs and quite challenging for the walkers. But most made it up the stairs to view the upper floor, bedrooms and bachelors apartments including the bedroom Winston Churchill used.

When Winston Churchill came to stay, he would request to stay in the Portico Bedroom, as he could step onto the porch roof to smoke a cigar. He was otherwise banned by Alice Rothschild from smoking anywhere else!

After viewing the house, smaller groups split off into the gardens and gift shop.

At 2.30pm everyone assembled in the restaurant ready for their afternoon tea. All the guests tucked in and really enjoyed a scrumptious tea. Delicious pea and pecorino tartlets, haddock & cheese tartlets, cucumber sandwiches, smoked salmon roulade followed by macaroons, coffee cake, pecan and carrot cake, scones with jam & cream and the most beautiful panna cotta.

At 4pm the coach returned to take the group home, and a very happy but tired group arrived back in Wantage at 5.30pm. Drivers were already there ready to take everyone home.

A huge thank you to Angela Lindsay, Sarah Woodhouse, Tanja Salter, Lucy Notman plus Sarah Hill and Courtney Alexander for being amazing with all the guests.

Thank you to Russell & Jackie Stock, John Durban and Jan Taylor for driving in the morning and the evening.

Thanks also to Lee our driver from Abingdon Coaches, a great lad who was friendly and really helpful.

Feedback from our guests

“We had a wonderful day out and a lovely tea. Thank you, Mr Collins and the Trust.” ~ Mrs Johnson

“We enjoyed the beautiful house and delicious food, thank you all; we had a good time.” ~ Pam & Betty

“Thank you, Ray and all your helpers and team for another fantastic day out, I really had a lovely time.” ~ Angela

Breaking the cycle of loneliness

“I really enjoy days like today,” said Trust chairman Ray Collins. “Although they take a lot of organising and can be quite stressful on the day, we all had a lovely day out.”

“We toured a beautiful house and enjoyed a wonderful tea, made some new friends, learnt some new things and had a fun day in great company.”

“The day out cost £1600, paid from funds raised at the Wantage Carnival and other events run by the Trust. We will continue to try and break down the cycle of loneliness so many local people find themselves in. Days like today are how we keep making a real difference in our community.”

To find out how you can help us, or to donate, please get in touch.

Our Partners