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32 Friendly villages



Our activities and lifestyle programme caters for a wide range of interests.

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Our award-winning Triple A exercise programme for all levels of fitness

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Woodcote Retirement Village - Meet Elaine Richards...

Hello, my name is Elaine Richards and apparently at my birth in Bluff in 1933, my mother looked into the cradle and muttered, “Oh no, here’s trouble!”

One of four children, I had two elder brothers and one younger sister. I loved Bluff and the many fun days spent on the beach. I laugh about my school days - 0 for Maths, 1 for Neatness and 10 out of 10 for Mischievousness. Along with my sister Gillian, I learned music from the age of four from a famous Southland lady, Mabel McKenzie.

In 1945 my family moved to Christchurch. My sister and I attended Elmwood School, then on to Rangi Ruru.

I spent two years at St. George’s Hospital training as a carer, one year in the Heathcote City Council office, then trained and qualified as a florist at Reids.

I then trained as a Karitane Nurse. Girls in those days were not paid for the 18 months of training, so in order to pay for my uniform, I stoked the furnaces to keep the water hot,

helped in the kitchen and worked in the laundry. Nursing was a wonderful career.

I met my husband Toby at a football match and one day he said “When do you want to get a ring?” This led to a wonderful married life on the farm at Windwhistle in an old sod house (until a new home was built) with amazing views of Mount Hutt and the Torlesse Range. It was this view that encouraged my love of painting.

We were blessed with four daughters, Tisha, Janey, Nicky and Ginny and one son Henry. Our family life was filled with laughter, farming, gardening, art work, and music.

WC Res Profile - Elaine with daughters Nicky and Tish and gt-grandchildrenjpgWC Res Profile - Elaine with daughters Nicky and Tish and gt-grandchildren

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