A FAMILY-RUN care home in Low Moor has been recognised for all its efforts in the wake of COVID-19, after winning Care Home of the Year 2020 for West Yorkshire.

Sal Royd Villa, which was established in 1987, won the award despite going through its "hardest ever" period, due to the current crisis.

The care home was first opened by Kath and Ian Ellwood, and is now managed by their daughter, Joanne Ellwood, with their grandaughters Rebecca Riley and Rachael Marshall also involved in managing and running the business.

Kath passed away in 2012, and Ian in September 2019, which, along with the chaos caused by coronavirus, have made things difficult for Sal Royd in recent times.

"The last 12 months have been very tough - my father passed away in September, and it's been a very emotional period, especially with everything that's going on at the moment, with coronavirus", said Joanne, the care home's manager.

"But we're absolutely delighted to win this award. We had a little celebratory drink with our residents, and it's given all of our staff even greater morale.

"You hear about all these deaths from coronavirus in care homes, but thankfully our residents are all fine, but they are missing their families, who are unable to visit.

"Some of the residents who have dementia don't really understand what's going on. It's a very tough time.

"I can't see my own grandchildren, either, which is hard, especially as it's my grandaughter's birthday tomorrow.

"But our residents do get to FaceTime their families, and we've had children from local schools sending letters and posters and writing to them, which is lovely.

"We've also had a lot of support from local businesses, including the Chapel House pub in Low Moor, which donated a lot of food to us, as otherwise they'd have to just throw it out. We've also had businesses donating cakes, which is great.

"I'm so proud of all of our staff, for all their good work, and I hope that the country can come out of this and get back to normal."

Joanne's daughter, Rachael Marshall, who is the care home's finance manager, also expressed her happiness after winning the award.

"It's a family-run business, so it's all quite emotional. But we're ecstatic and we've worked so hard for this", she said.

"My nana and grandad, who founded Sal Royd Villa over 30 years ago, have sadly passed away. My grandad, Ian, passed away in September and it was quite sudden. Their deaths have left it up to us to carry on their legacy, and we feel like winning this award has shown that we're doing a good job for them.

"The last few months have been the hardest ever, due to coronavirus, and we've had to shut our doors to the residents' family members. We were also struggling for staff, at one point, but at this time, everyone is pulling together.

"The support from the community has been unbelieveable. Children have been writing letters, Chapel House donated food and people have donated gloves and PPE.

"Everyone is quite down, depressed and scared right now, so winning this award couldn't have come at a better time for us."