CLS Care Services

The World's Oldest Netball Team

What happened

It went massive, TV, radio, online, press:

BBC Northwest ★ Radio Manchester ★ BBC Radio 2 ★ TalkSport ★ The Independent Online ★ Manchester Evening News ★ Metro ★ Warrington Guardian ★ Wigan Evening Post ★ Leigh Reporter ★ Netball Magazine ★ and the New York Daily News (naturally).

We even had to turn down Granada Reports and Channel 5 (the home was too busy to host them).

Who, what, how

CLS run care homes.

The perception: residents sat around a TV nodding off in wingback chairs.

The truth (well, we can only speak for CLS homes): loads of activities and exercise classes to keep residents mobile, engaged and mentally stimulated.

Trying to make life as good as it can be.

So, how best to say it?

A stream of good news stories: the spotlight on residents and how their home has helped them.

Every now and again a gem comes along.

Or, to put it another way, something we can make into a gem.

The weekly exercise class, for example, sparked an idea.

Throwing a ball into a basket. Doesn't sound much, but...

It set off a conversation amongst the throwers, remembering when they were young, playing netball.

They had a great afternoon. And told us about it.

Instant headline: ‘The world’s oldest netball team’.

We wrote the words, they made netball bibs – wing attack, goal shooter, you know.

We pitched it round the networks and it took off.