Pozières Retirement Village offers lifestyle and support to retirees in beautiful Port Macquarie and we find out more from RSL LifeCare Retirement Village Manager Cathy Snook.
Can you introduce yourself to our readers and your role with RSL Life Care?
Hi, I’m Cathy Snook (Catherine when I’m in trouble!) I come from Brighton in the UK which is on the south coast known for its famous pier, mods and rockers and Pebble Beach, which is very different to the beautiful beaches of Port Macquarie. I moved to Port Macquarie approximately 13 years ago. After a few different roles around Port Macquarie and juggling motherhood to my daughter Lilly, I saw an advert for a Village Manager at Le Hamel Retirement Village for RSL Life Care. A friend of mine said to me, “you should do that role Cathy, you would be great at that” and so I applied for the position and here I am today, 8 years later!
I felt I had found a profession where the work is meaningful. I genuinely felt I made a difference to people’s lives, I care. My residents became my family I met their families and they saw my daughter grow as she came and helped me in the village. I knew that RSL lifecare had purchased some land and that there would be another village being built of which it finally has, and consequently I have since moved from Le Hamel Village and have been a part of the commissioning of Ocean Drive, Pozières Retirement Village. As all of Stage 1 villas are now complete and ready to be occupied, I have now moved into the role of Sales Manager to focus on bringing some beautiful people into the village to make it shine!
“As all of Stage 1 villas are now complete and ready to be occupied, I have now moved into the role of Sales Manager to focus on bringing some beautiful people into the village to make it shine! “
RSL Life Care are known all over NSW and the ACT, can you tell us a little bit about the Company itself?
RSL Life Care is a charitable organisation with 28 Retirement Living Villages, 28 Aged Care Homes and Home Care services across NSW and the ACT. Since 1911 RSL Life Care has been serving the community by providing professional, caring support for veterans. The company’s veteran culture is the reason I still work for RSL Life Care. I remember attending an RSL Life Care conference and seeing a video of recent veterans who had lost their lives and pictures of the families that had been left behind and at the moment I was so moved to tears that I felt I belonged to a company whose culture runs deeper than profit. RSL Life Care originated over 100 years ago, primarily set up for returned servicemen/woman but soon became apparent that there was a greater need to not only service those that had returned but families of those and those that had served at home. 100+ years later our culture remains the same, but we are certainly not exclusive anymore. Today, we welcome all members of the public – whether veteran or non-veteran – to live in our villages, care homes or at your home. Our purpose is to enrich veterans and seniors lives and create connected, supportive and vibrant communities.
Here in Port Macquarie there are 3 RSL Life Care facilities, where are they and who do they cater for?
We have Le Hamel Village which is a smaller village of 35 villas situated right on the Hastings River for Independent Living for Age 55+. Our new village Ocean Drive, Pozières Retirement Village has just been completed and ready to be resided in. 37 Villas have been completed with a further future development scheduled for Stage 2 and 3 pertaining to a maximum of 105 villas. Independent Living Age 55+ price points at Pozières start from $530,00+. Co-located at Pozières is Arthur Blackburn VC Gardens Residential Facility which is our brand new 80 bed nursing home and great for those wishing to transition to aged care at a later stage in life.
Pozières is the beautiful, brand new Retirement Village along Ocean Drive between Port Macquarie and Lake Cathie. Can you tell us about the amazing features and home within your new village?
Firstly, we are surrounded by bush, where you can hear the birds sing, a stone’s throw from the beach and not far from town. Our villas present very differently as they are really spacious and have beautiful high ceilings with lots of light. Fittings and fixtures include stone bench tops, ducted air conditioning and timber style flooring. The villas are all 2-bedroom, 2 bathroom (master with en-suite) and study. With some of the styles, the study is large enough for a third bedroom when the grandchildren come to visit. There are a total of nine designs of homes to choose from in different locations. Several villas have lovely enclosed patios for your pet, or to simply sit out, relax and enjoy the beautiful surrounds while you have a glass for wine or BBQ.
With regards to facilities and amenities, there is a heated pool, bowling green, hairdressers, gym and a beautiful mezzanine floor that looks over bush where the sun sets. Modern amenities with stylish furnishings complement the beautiful community centre with a café onsite that will serve our residents, friends and families of our residents so you don’t have to go too far to get a good cup of coffee and a spot of lunch after a dip in the pool or a game of bowls.
“Once you are in a village it really is very cost effective as your outgoings are minimal with no rates, building insurance, pest control or garden maintenance, to name a few.”
What advice would you give to someone looking to move or downsize into a retirement village?
Do It!! Don’t leave it too long. The biggest response I get from residents that move into a village environment is I should have done this sooner!! It’s fun, independent living and is certainly not Gods waiting room! You have your own home without all the worries of maintenance issues, and a vibrant supportive community so you are never on your own. This is your home to come and go as you please, lock up and go away with the peace of mind that your home is in safe hands. You can also be as much or as little involved in village life and community activities as you wish. Once you are in a village it really is very cost effective as your outgoings are minimal with no rates, building insurance, pest control or garden maintenance, to name a few.
Can you tell us about the process for those looking at moving into Pozières?
Call or email me. I will set up an appointment and go through all of the details, show you around the village and display homes, with no obligation. Come and visit, I’ll put the kettle on and bring all of your questions as I would be happy to provide any assistance. If you view a villa that you like a deposit of $5,000 is required to hold that villa for you, which is totally refundable if you decide you cannot proceed.
What makes Pozières different to other retirement villages?
Our styles of villas, our coastal location and that fact we offer all levels of care as we have Arthur Blackburn residential facility on site and Home Care services available to you offering personalised support based on your individual needs. I want people to move into Ocean Drive, Pozières Retirement Village because they want to be here. I want this to be the best village and the residents to be happy where they live and enjoy the lifestyle that Pozières has to offer. My current residents are the best advocate of that!