Only Fools and Horses star reveals new role working in care home

Only Fools and Horses star Daniel Peacock loves his job working in a care home Credit: BPM

Only Fools and Horses star Daniel Peacock, aka 'Mental Mickey' has revealed he is working in a care home and living in a caravan - and couldn't be happier.

The 64-year-old from Barnet has been on the acting scene for more than four decades but has taken on a role working at Hastings Court Care Home in East Sussex.

Commuting in from his caravan in Cobham, Kent, the star says he has found the work more inspiring than anything he’s ever done.

And that includes writing his own TV shows and starring in films such as Quadrophenia and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.

His new role came about three years ago when his late dad, actor Trevor Peacock, was in a different residential home battling dementia and Alzheimer's.

He had just finished writing the second series of his comedy Marley’s Ghosts when his son encouraged him to apply for his first ever 'real-job' with the care home's lifestyle team.

He said: "I bought a caravan in Kent as I thought I really wanted to get some solitude and I’ve always loved holiday parks. So there I am in my caravan writing every now and then, enjoying no pressure and stress.

"I started watching TV programs I’ve never watched before in my life, not the greatest but they were on TV. Then my son Charlie said 'Dad you’re watching way too much television' and suggested I get a job.

"At that time, I thought 'I don’t even know how to do anything else', he found me a job at Hastings Court."

He now arranges entertainment and activities for the residents, alongside working on projects in the TV industry.

Trevor Peacock died in March 2021 after spending three years in a care home and his son says he was inspired by his dad's situation.

The actor says he loves 'bonding with the residents'

He explained: "Because my dad had been in a residential home, tragically, with the most awful disease Alzheimers, it was the first time I came face to face with this terrible condition and I wasn’t overly impressed with the care home. So when I got here at Hastings Court, it was like a very impressive hotel.

"I started to inject some entertainment and conversation between the residents and bringing them all together. A lot of the residents have lived history, during and at the end of the war so you bond with people here.

"My dad died of that horrible disease but working here has made me a better person."

An award-winning writer for his children's show Cave Girl, the star has now also been nominated for a National Care Award 2022 for his work at the care home.

He says if he wins, it will be his proudest moment.

The star has been nominated for a National Care Award for his work and says if he wins, it will be his proudest moment. Credit: BPM

"I’m passionate about making the residents' lives as fun and fulfilling as I possibly can," he said.

He said the lifestyle team has set up a "memory cafe" that acts as a support group for family members every couple of weeks where it's a safe place for individuals to come.

"Sometimes people break down and cry, which they haven’t been able to do as they suppress it," he said.

"We get lovely responses from family members, they're handing over their loved ones to strangers. So it is important that the love they feel for their family members continue here at Hastings Court.

"Without a shadow of a doubt, I wouldn’t have been here without my dad's situation in later life, I’ve learned a huge amount," he said.

"Now that is the most rewarding time of my life, I wake up every morning happy I’m going to work."

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