Gunnersbury Avenue and Thornton Avenue receive ‘Good’ and ‘Outstanding’ Headway reaccreditation!

Gunnersbury Avenue and Thornton Avenue receive ‘Good’ and ‘Outstanding’ Headway reaccreditation!


We are proud to announce that both Gunnersbury Avenue and Thornton Avenue have been reaccredited by the approved provider scheme, Headway, with an overall ‘Good’ rating, awarded ‘Good’ in five domains and ‘Outstanding’ in one domain. Gunnersbury Avenue and Thornton Avenue supports both men and women with a wide range of conditions, epilepsy, anxiety, mental health, challenging behaviours, and autism.

“Headway has developed the Approved Provider scheme, an accreditation scheme open to residential care settings. This includes NHS and independent hospitals, neuro-rehabilitation units, residential and nursing homes and respite facilities, specialising in acquired brain injury (ABI).

The scheme utilises standards developed to reflect the specific needs of people with ABI, using these to evaluate a range of facilities including hospitals and neuro-rehabilitation units, residential and nursing homes and respite facilities.”

Headway have recognised the outstanding environment provided for service users. “The premises are suited to the needs of service users, and are accessible, safe, well maintained and compliant with all relevant regulations.” The Headway AP Assessors found the property to be well kept, clean and tidy, with maintenance procedures in place to ensure the premises are regularly audited, well maintained and comfortable.

The report also stated that “The service provider ensures that staff receive ongoing relevant training, support and supervision, in order to carry out their roles effectively. This must include relevant and specific training in acquired brain injury, appropriate to the needs of the care group, i.e., as indicated by the stage of the care pathway at which the service operates, and the types of difficulty experienced by service users.”

It was highlighted that the service users are supported by staff to continue to make progress towards increased levels of independence on a daily basis. The report states that ‘the services mission statement/philosophy of care is to support service users to make progress towards an independent lifestyle. Gareth was able to share positive stories such as previous service users getting married and now successfully living out in the community. Service users can also look upon Gunnersbury Avenue as a home for life if they wish to and this stability offers comfort and confidence to them. The staff spoken with had a good understanding of the ethos of the service and philosophy of care and showed appreciation of the individual needs of service users with ABI.’

One family member told the inspectors that they loved the range of activities on offer for her brother before the pandemic, which she looks forward to being restarted at the nearest opportunity. The teams have continued to support service users to communicate with their families, and staff with each other during COVID-19 guidelines, including Zoom, Teams, WhatsApp, phone calls, Skype, and letter writing. The Manager held Facetime, Zoom and WhatsApp sessions with the service users’ families regularly. The Manager reported that, as with his other service, the service users have made good use of the large array of games and activities he bought for the house at the beginning of the pandemic. The service user spoken with during the visit happily spoke about watching Football on the big TV screen, darts and pool tournaments and also going to Streatham Ice Hockey stadium. Staff have continued to escort service users on walks, as necessary, to maintain health and wellbeing.

Gareth Thorndale, Dual Service Manager of Gunnersbury Avenue and Thornton Avenue has commented ‘We’re so pleased with this wonderful outcome. Thank you for all of the hard work leading up to the inspections from both Thornton and Gunnersbury Avenue staff. It is really appreciated.’