New dementia unit opens in Kelso

George Young (company secretary), Karis Marinello (senior relationship manager at RBS), and Ray Jones (chairman)

A new £6.1 million dementia unit has opened in Kelso, which will create dozens of jobs for the local and surrounding communities.

The 18-bed facility, called Murray House, was boosted by a £4 million fundraising campaign and a £2.1 million finance package from Royal Bank of Scotland.

The unit is situated on land adjacent to Queen’s House care home, which owns and operates the facility. A further 9-bed unit, Evanthea House, will be ready for occupation in spring this year.

Ray Jones, chairman of Queen’s House Care Home said, “We are extremely proud to officially open the doors of Murray House, our new specialist dementia care facility. Queen’s House was created to deliver exceptional standards of care to the elderly residents in the town of Kelso and beyond in an environment that’s comfortable, safe, homely and happy. Dementia affects around one in six people over 80 in Scotland and, with the launch of Murray House, residents in the Scottish Borders living with the illness won’t need to travel further afield for specialist dementia care.

“The Trustees of Queen’s House are incredibly grateful to Royal Bank of Scotland for its financial support and a very generous individual who has provided a considerable donation. This has been supplemented by substantial backing from The Robertson Trust, The Wolfson Foundation, Life Changes Trust and The Mustard Seed Foundation, as well as valuable contributions by a number of local charitable trusts and individuals.”

Karis Marinello, senior relationship manager at Royal Bank of Scotland added, “It’s important for those living with dementia to be surrounded by people they love, in the community where they’ve grown up, and Murray House and Evanthea House will enable the elderly residents in the Scottish Borders to access specialist, first-class care locally. It will deliver significant benefits, not just for those using the facility, but for their families and the local community, with the creation of new jobs for the town of Kelso.”