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Cooking up a Storm at Olsen Court

People are surprised when I say I studied media at college but now, after eight years at LACE Housing, I can’t imagine doing anything other than working in a kitchen.

As a cook at Olsen Court in Lincoln, I’ve been able to gain professional qualifications while working full time, which has built up my confidence in the role. It also helps that I’m part of such a great team! 

My colleagues Maggie, Gary, Nathan, Ross and Shelby are happy to share the workload and, once we’ve checked what’s on the menu, our first job is to make breakfast – the most important meal of the day! A favourite among the tenants is a traditional cooked breakfast with bacon and eggs, which I think they really look forward to.

Then we move on to preparing the meals for the remainder of the day including dessert, which I particularly enjoy making – along with new and exciting dishes.

As you can imagine, I have witnessed several memorable incidents over the years, namely colleagues splitting their trousers and even hearing rumours that there was a kangaroo on the loose! It sounds clichéd, but it’s true that no two days at LACE Housing are the same. 

Towards the end of each shift, we clean up and do what we can to prepare for the next day, which can include sorting through paperwork and ordering supplies. 

But perhaps the best part of my job is getting to interact with residents and the wider LACE Housing team; there is always lots of laughter and friendly banter and I love being able to put a smile on people’s faces. It’s very rewarding to see that your work is appreciated. 

Ruth Irwin, Cook at Olsen Court

Homes England
Regulator of social housing
Blue skies consortium
Dementia Action Alliance
Housing Ombudsman Service
Lincs Independent Living Partnership
National Housing Federation