Sheltered housing in Shaftesbury, Dorset

Our History

The Pepperell Blackmore Vale Society is an independent registered charity founded in 1976. It was originally affiliated to The Abbeyfield Society, founded in 1956 by the inspirational Richard Carr-Gomm to alleviate loneliness in older people and enhance their quality of life.

The house in Bleke Street, Shaftesbury, was acquired with the help of a grant from the Housing Corporation. Pepperell House is now a Grade II listed building. On completion of the original conversion in July 1982, our first six residents were welcomed through the doors. Two further rooms were added in 1985.

Thanks to two generous donations from the Dunhill Medical and Margaret Fisher Charitable Trusts we were able to add an extension and increase the number of rooms to fifteen.

The Society is directed and managed by a committee of volunteer trustees, which enables us to offer our services at a reasonable and fair price as required by The Regulator of Social Housing.

We employ a dedicated staff team and are supported by a group of loyal volunteers.


Integral to our society are the volunteer trustees who have overall responsibility for the house, its residents, staff and volunteers.  They come from a wide variety of backgrounds (eg nursing, social work, law, voluntary organisations and business) and all have one thing in common – a desire to help and support older people to live their lives to the full in a safe and homely environment.

Executive Committee
Barbara Yoxall – Chairwoman
Gina Dent – Residents’ Support/Advocate
Lesley Martyn – Company Secretary
Keith Yoxall – Treasurer
Stuart Asbury – General Support

Our Volunteers
In addition to the Trustees we are lucky to be generously supported by a small loyal group of Friends/Volunteers who help in all sorts of invaluable ways that mean so much to the residents.

The Staff Team

We employ a small staff team comprising our manager, deputy, housekeeper and general assistants, who between them keep the house in order, plan and cook the meals, and provide general daily support to all our residents.

Staff Vacancies

Room Vacancies

We deeply regret that we are not currently accepting new residents.

Many of you will have heard the very sad news that the house will be closing on 30 September 2022. We have had low occupancy since before Covid which has worsened these last few months. We now have only seven residents in a house that should take 15 and rents are our only source of income.  The Trustees have been working very hard, particularly over the last three years, to keep the books balanced, but we are now in the unenviable position of having to draw on our reserves, meaning we will soon be unable to pay our bills.  This is coupled with the fact that we will be losing key Trustees in the next months and they have so far been impossible to replace.  We are grateful for all the support we have been given over the years and even now a group of relatives and friends are doing their best to help us find a solution to our predicament.  We are not hopeful but applaud their enthusiasm.  In the meantime we are happy to take enquiries and keep people advised if the miracle happens.

Please know that any posts on social media are put out by supporters and friends, not us.  If you require any further information, please do contact us directly.

[email protected]

01747 854922