126 Care UK homes across England, Scotland and Wales lit their Lamp Light of Peace to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day.

The provider led the way on the Light Lamp of Peace initiative for the sector, and joined other settings, including hospital trusts, to pay their respects.

D-Day 80, of which this campaign is a part, was developed by Pageantmaster Bruno Peek CVO OBE OPR. He has led Royal and international celebrations for nearly 40 years. D-Day 80 has partnered with The Normandy Memorial Trust, The Royal Naval Association, ABF The Soldiers Charity, RAF Benevolent Fund and the Merchant Navy Association.

In addition to illuminating the night with their own Lamp Lights of Peace, most homes hosted their own events throughout the day, inviting the community in to pay their respects.

Homes were also invited to take part in a D-Day cake competition. This allowed residents to reminisce with chefs to create a cake to memorialise the occasion. Once they had settled on an idea, they could help to make or decorate it. Most homes shared their cakes at the community events they ran on Thursday 6th June. The winning home, Hadrian House in Gateshead, created a fruitcake inspired by Vera Lynn and the White Cliffs of Dover.

Andrew Knight, CEO of Care UK, said: “It was a privilege to see our homes across the UK pay their respects and mark the D-Day-80 commemorations in so many ways – most significantly with their Lamp Light of Peace.

I know many residents took the opportunity to remember their own loved ones, some of whom served in the Armed Forces or contributed to the effort back on the Home Front. It was also an opportunity for residents and their families to acknowledge those with loved ones who are currently serving in our Armed Forces at home and overseas.  I am glad that we were able to support residents, families, and the local communities around our homes in marking this special day of commemoration, encouraging everyone to gather and remember the importance of the sacrifices made 80 years ago.”

Bruno Peek said of the initiative: “I wanted to ensure that all those in care throughout the United Kingdom, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man were provided with the important and equal opportunity of being part of the D-Day 80 commemorations by lighting Lamp Lights of Peace at 9.15pm, coinciding with the lighting of the Beacons that night.

“I was delighted when Care UK, our ‘leading’ care provider in the sector, agreed to light a lamp in their homes, with the flame from each representing the ‘light of peace’ that emerged from the dreadful darkness of war 80 years ago.”

The Lamp Light of Peace will be able to be reused by homes in the future, including annually on 11th November as part of their Armistice Day commemorations.

Care UK continues to strive for innovative ways to support and honour veterans and military families across their homes. Recently, Hollins Park care home in Macclesfield achieved the high standards needed to qualify for the Veteran Friendly Framework (VFF).

The aim of the VFF is to better support the practical, emotional and social needs of the Armed Forces community in residential care homes across England, by providing training and resources to assess and improve the care they offer. It helps to tackle loneliness and has the scope to deliver improved health and wellbeing outcomes for the 25,000 veterans living in care homes in England.

In Chingford, Ivy Grove care home made the dreams of an RAF veteran come true for his birthday. As part of our ‘Wishing Tree’ initiative, which encourages residents to ask for a special experience – no matter how big or small, 103-year-old Arthur Clark took to the skies once more just prior to his birthday.

The home team arranged for Arthur be a passenger in a 1930s Dragon Rapide plane at Classic Wings at Duxford in Cambridge. Arthur was a former RAF pilot who served in India and Singapore with the 2896 squadron formed in 1942, was surprised by the care home with a visit to for the special flight on May 10.

Learn more about how Care UK fulfils lives and supports residents every day at www.careuk.com.

More information about the D-Day 80 campaign can be found at www.d-day80beacons.co.uk.