THE mother of adventurer Bear Grylls has officially opened Upton’s new £6.8million Waypoints care home.

Lady Sally Grylls, a national campaigner on dementia issues, opened the home after a short ceremony.

She was joined by two special guests with a century spanning their ages – Waypoint’s oldest resident Freda Stevens, 105, from the care group’s Verwood home, and five-year-old Yarrell’s Preparatory School pupil Isla Culliford.

Lady Grylls, a champion of the charity Dementia UK, said: “Waypoints Upton is a flagship facility of the sort that every community in Dorset needs and it is a great privilege to be asked to open this new home.

“People are living much longer now and they and their families are affected by memory loss and more serious dementia, so the importance of having somewhere safe to be cannot be understated.”

The 64-bed care home offers specialist nursing care for people living with dementia, and respite break services.

It is centred around a social hub and includes an on-site chemist, restaurant, traditional sweet shop and an in-house cinema.

Waypoints Upton has been built at the site of the former Greenridge pub, which remained derelict for a number of years after closing.

Waypoints managing director Andrew Baxendine expects that when the Upton home is fully operational it will provide jobs for 80 people.

He added: “The opening of Waypoints Upton is a very exciting and proud day for us and we are pleased to have been able to work so closely with people in Upton to provide additional facilities, which will benefit the whole community.”

Lady Grylls, who works to highlight the role of Admiral Nurses, said: “I also want to thank Waypoints for their support for Admiral Nurses and I hope more organisations will follow their lead in coming forward to host Admiral Nurses.”

Admiral Nurses are specialist dementia nurses whose role is to provide practical and emotional support to family carers, as well as the person with dementia.