Retail workers gave a home for residents with learning disabilities a much needed makeover.

Staff from B&Q in Lewes Road, Brighton, went to Jean Marshall House in Hove to paint the “tired and shabby” communal living room and conservatory.

Eight people live at Jean Marshall, which is a supported living house for adults with learning disabilities, run by The Outlook Foundation, a registered charity offering supportive homes in the city.

As well as donating their labour, B&Q invited The Outlook Foundation to choose paint and soft furnishings from the store.

Residents opted for a soft grey paint, white blinds to keep the room bright and some cushions for the sofa.

Some of the adults with learning disabilities who live in Jean Marshall House experience sensory issues, meaning a calm, gently lit space can be helpful to them.

The Argus: Jo and Dave from B&QJo and Dave from B&Q (Image: The Outlook Foundation)

Ben, who has lived at Jean Marshall House for five years, said: “The painting in the lounge looks really good now. The colour is lovely and welcoming.”

Sarah Wilmshurst, director of premises at The Outlook Foundation, gave her thanks to the B&Q team.


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“It’s wonderful to have the guys from B&Q here, seeing what we do, meeting some of the tenants, and most importantly creating a cosy and welcoming communal area for the guys to relax and socialise in,” she said.

The Argus: Ben enjoying the newly done up living roomBen enjoying the newly done up living room (Image: The Outlook Foundation)

“We’re a not-for-profit, so the donations of paint, soft furnishing and of course time is so valuable to us – we’re very grateful.”

Dave Jones, duty manager at B&Q Lewes Road, who brought some of his colleagues along to paint the room, said: “B&Q’s giving back to the community scheme is a really cool way for us to do some good work within the local area, as well as get out and about and meet some lovely people.”

Jo Bowker from B&Q said: “My dad taught me a lot of DIY and decorator skills, so it’s important to me to decorate to a high level.

“Environment is so important, to make people feel welcomed and cared for, so it’s great to be able to come here, meet some of the tenants, and leave them with their living spaces looking good.”