The Knole: Foundation to Enhanced


The Healthy Workplaces team recently sat down with Liz Thomas, Deputy Manager at The Knole (part of The Langley Trust) to talk about their journey through the Healthy Workplaces Award. 

The Knole are a 15-bed registered care home in the heart of Cheltenham for men with multiple needs, including mental health difficulties or learning difficulties. The Knole initially joined our Healthy Workplaces Community in January 2023, achieving their Foundation level accreditation in June of the same year.  

They then launched straight into the enhanced level, being signed off in December 2023, meaning they were able to achieve both levels of the award within just 12 months. This makes The Knole one of only seven double award winners, holding both Foundation and Enhanced level accreditations. 

In our chat, Liz highlighted that the Knole was a unique working environment, and the award gave them the opportunity to explore new ways of supporting their diverse workforce, helping staff become more engaged, and simply enjoy their work. Then, recognising that much of the groundwork was already in place, the opportunity to achieve the enhanced level award was one they didn’t want to miss. 

Liz felt that undertaking the enhanced award had a direct benefit to the Knole in helping unite a fractured workforce, bringing light to some specific areas that team members were not happy with. It also allowed the business practices to directly reflect the needs of their teams, such as having open, honest communication to strategies in place to identify issues and deal with them proactively.  

She also emphasised where the award has made an impact with the Knole’s clients, in that a happier, more engaged workforce has directly rubbed off on residents in the home, highlighting how the Healthy Workplaces Award has contributed to a more positive working and residential environment overall. 

Liz then touched on the support The Knole received during both levels of the award, having feedback from the Healthy Workplaces Team every step of the way. She felt this made the process so much easier because it helped guide progress in the right direction by offering a fresh set of eyes to look things over and discuss specific items with. 

Liz concluded the conversation by offering this advice to any organisation considering undertaking the foundation award or progressing from foundation to enhanced: “It's something that's absolutely worth doing because it gives you time and space to really think about what you're doing in the workplace and where you’re adding value”.

She went on to add that As a manager, it’s nice to think that you're making the workplace better for everybody and people are enjoying coming to work each day. Staff feel more confident and have more autonomy. They're coming up with ideas and require less management. Sickness rates are also down because we’re working to help people take care of themselves”.  

We are so grateful to Liz for taking time out of her day to share their story and hope it has inspired you to take the next step on your journey. 

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