Visiting pet lambs spark a trip down memory lane for retired farmers living at an East Devon care home

A retired farmer living in a care home in East Devon who never thought she would hold a lamb again was surprised when a cute and cuddly pair paid a surprise visit.

Pet lambs Primrose and Dotty, and their owner Nicola Westlake, from Westy and Worzel, recently visited the Seaton Nursing Home, in Fore Street, in a bid to meet the residents.

Nicola, an organic farmer from near Seaton, East Devon, spent time talking with residents about the animals, while visiting her father-in-law – retired farmer Percy – who also lives at the nursing home.

She said: “Every single resident reacted with joy and pleasure at meeting the lambs.

“One resident farmed for about 50 years before retiring and she used to keep ewes.

“She sat with one on her lap for ages, having never thought she would hold a lamb again.”


Pictured here is resident Phyllis Johnson with a lamb.
Photo: with permission.


Resident Percy Westlake with his daughter-in-law, NIcola, who brought the lambs to visit the residents.
Photo: with permission.

East Devon

Resident Jeannie Allder with one of the lambs.
Photo: with permisson.

The lambs visited the residents in the gardens of the nursing home – and Percy and Nicola shared tales about farming life.

Nicola said the lamb visit helped her meet some of the other residents and has resulted in new friendships.

She said: “Percy has been at The Seaton since December. He helped his sons to set up the farm and he used to spend his weekends helping with the chores.

“Percy still takes a keen interest in the farm and so I thought I would bring a few of the lambs along for him and the other residents to meet.”

Nicola added: “Before, when I went to see Percy, I sat next to him and just talked to him.

“When I took the lambs there it felt more like a family because everyone was interacting with each other.

“Now when I go in there, I speak to the other residents too.”

Kelly Boweren, administration manager at The Seaton, said the residents had been ‘delighted’ to meet the lambs.

She said: “We had such a lovely visit from Nicola. She called us up and offered to bring the lambs because Percy lives with us.

“It was a fantastic treat, and the residents really loved it – one lamb even dozed off on Phyllis’s lap.”

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