Muriel Thompson

Thompson drives enthusiasm at Abbeyfield House

Muriel Thompson is a longtime resident at Port Alberni's Abbeyfield House.

An important date to celebrate this month (besides Seniors Week) is the second annual “Abbeyfield Week”, which will be held June 8–15 in homes worldwide. In fact, there are more than 800 Abbeyfield homes and more than 9,000 residents in 17 countries.

The Abbeyfield movement began in 1956 when Major Richard Carr-Gomm resigned his commission with the British Army and bought a property at 50 Eugene Rd., South London for 250 pounds.

It was to provide housing for four people—the only qualification being loneliness. In 1987, Canada opened its first Abbeyfield house in Sidney, B.C. Today, there are 30 Abbeyfield houses in Canada.

And here in our community, the late Terry Whyte made possible the opening of the Port Alberni home. Now, under the leadership of Marlene Dietrich and an active board of directors, our local Abbeyfield provides accommodation to 21 residents.

One of those residents is Muriel Thompson, who is now the longest living resident of Abbeyfield. She has lived in this home for the past six and a half years. Mrs. Thompson, originally from Ontario, lived in California for several years with her husband, who passed away in 1985.

In 2003, Mrs. Thompson decided to move to Brentwood Bay on Vancouver Island to live with her daughter, and shortly after, to Port Alberni, where her second daughter lives.

“I decided to come here to be closer to my other daughter and to Abbeyfield because I felt lonely and depressed,” she says. “I have had no regrets, because this place satisfies my needs and allows me to have friends, be independent, keep busy, have my daughter coming to visit me regularly, and I have a large room with my own furniture.

“In other words, for me, it is a perfect place!”.

All these years since she first arrived, Mrs. Thompson has been actively involved in the life of Abbeyfield, not only socializing regularly with her peers but assisting others. She also oversaw the “Abbeyfield Convenience Store” when it was first opened.

And when the home’s first bus arrived, called at that time  “the pride of Abbeyfield”, it was Muriel who was asked to do the christening of the vehicle, mainly for her enthusiastic endorsement of this means of transportation at Abbeyfield.

Just Posted

BCHL: Bulldogs beat Cowichan in double OT

Teams are 1–1 in three-game home-and-home stand; play in Cowichan Jan. 20

Port Alberni city council to ‘stay on course’ for five-year budget plan

Next budget meeting is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 29 at 6 p.m

Alberni businesses nominated for Island excellence

Coulson Ice Blast, Port Posh Wash, the Blue Marlin Inn and Totem… Continue reading

BCHL: Speedy left winger commits to Bulldogs

Forward Ethan Jang will be suiting up for the 2018-19 season

Rollin Art Centre open now

Make sure to renew your Community Arts Council membership

Parksville MakerSpace members ride the rails

New room added for model train enthusiasts; workshop set for Jan. 21

Wind warning back in effect around Vancouver Island

80 km/h winds expected Saturday, Jan. 20, on east coast of Island, 100 km/h on west coast

Man receives four-year sentence for stabbing Good Samaritan near Qualicum Beach

Jeffrey Brian MacDonald sentenced to additional 242 days in jail

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

UPDATE: BC Transit’s handyDart service strike delayed

LRB application by contractor means new strike notice must be issued by union

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

Most Read