A CHILDREN'S home has brought joy to youngsters coping with learning disabilities and autism with the launch of a new garden cinema room taking “movie nights” to the next level.

Abbeyfield House in Dentons Green teamed up with garden room supplier Rubicon Garden Rooms to create the perfect Hollywood hideaway, allowing its youngsters to enjoy the full cinematic experience from the comfort of their own garden.

The 3.6m by 9m building, which is partitioned into two to provide office space and a separate 3.6m x 5m home cinema area, has been kitted out with spotlighting, comfy sofa with leg rests, widescreen TV and fridge to give the youngsters all the perks of a trip to the cinema.

There are even plans to add an authentic popcorn machine in the coming weeks.

“It’s going to be magic in the summer, we all can’t wait to get in and try it out after the groundworks are complete,” said Richard North, registered manager at Abbeyfield.

“We already have a sensory room, a trampoline and swings. We have a greenhouse specifically made for us so the glass doesn’t break where we can grow our own vegetables and now we have a cinema and family room.

“The idea of creating the room was to give the children a private space to enjoy movies with their families as well as with each other should they wish.

“It’s a familiar and quiet place which is reassuring for our children. Some of our youngsters do not like to share their surroundings and so the room provides a private space for them to relax and enjoy a film.

“The children have seen the development at every level and they are all very eager to use it.”

St Helens Star:

The room

Abbeyfield House, on Rainford Road, cares for six young people aged from eight to 18 with a range of complex needs including autism, learning difficulties and physical disabilities.

With a rota of 28 staff, the team is dedicated to ensuring the children live life to the full and have every opportunity to achieve their dreams and overcome their fears.

“We’re about enabling people to fulfil their lives,” said Richard, 55, who has worked at the home for the past 13 years.

“We had a young gentleman before who had never gone to the dentist because he was so frightened. We did a lot of work around it and eventually he agreed to be checked out and all was good – it was a big step forward for him. It’s something most of us would take for granted.

“We’ve had other young people who’ve never been in an aeroplane before. We arranged sessions where they visited the airport and experienced flight simulators and have then gone to Euro Disney at the end of it all.

“It’s a very rewarding job. The best part about it is seeing someone doing something they’ve never done before.”

The children’s home recently added a new outdoor office for staff which freed up a room inside which they converted into a new computer room for the children.

While they were expanding the garden, the idea of a cinema/family room arose, which would give them a private area to spend with their families in addition to the main lounge.

The room, which has two double door entrances providing wheelchair access, were fitted with electrical points to enable staff to use heaters and add a fridge. There is also laminate flooring and flagging stonework outside, completed by an external contractor.

Rubicon Garden Rooms MD John Lyon said: “Abbeyfield House is a wonderful facility that truly changes children’s lives for the better. It’s been a pleasure to work on the cinema room and we are delighted to be able to help make a difference.”