MORE than 150 residents from 17 Orders of St John Care Trust Homes in Wiltshire have showcased their arts, crafts, flower arranging and baking skills.

The fruits of their labours were put on display at the OSJCT’s annual harvest and craft show at Melksham Assembly Hall on Wednesday (12 Sept).

Organiser Karen Johnson, OSJCT’s volunteer and events manager for Wiltshire, said: “Our annual harvest and craft show is much anticipated by the residents.

“It gives an opportunity to showcase creativity, as well as to promote social interaction and engagement on a larger scale between the homes.

“Residents benefit greatly from being involved in the community and it is heartening to see them having a lovely afternoon.”

The crafts on show included vegetables and fruit, flowers, cakes, jams and pickles, woollen and needlework and art and pottery.

The residents’ exhibits were judged by OSJCT senior managers, followed by a prize-giving to the winners.

The best overall display winner was Brookside Care Centre in Melksham, which won three firsts for best vegetables, best preserve and best fruit, and took a second place in the cake section.

The best overall runner-up was the Avonbourne Care Centre in Salisbury.

Around 156 people took part, including 75 residents, 66 employees, trust volunteers, residents’ families and bus drivers.

Entertainment was provided by Julie Hunt, who sang popular wartime songs from the 1940s.

Among the homes taking part were Brookside in Melksham, Hungerford House in Corsham, Seymour House in Chippenham, Marden Court in Calne, Hayward Care Centre in Devizes, Florence Court and Goodson Lodge in Trowbridge, Watersmead in Westbury, Ashwood in Warminster, Coombe End Court in Marlborough, Bartlett House in Ludgershall, Athelstan House in Malmesbury, and Ridgeway House in Royal Wootton Bassett.

OSJCT operates some 72 care homes, including 17 in Wiltshire. Others are in Lincolnshire, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire, Suffolk and West Sussex.

It also provides care services at Florence Court, an independent living scheme in Trowbridge.