Frequently asked questions

Below is a selection of the questions we get asked most frequently. However, if you prefer to talk to a member of staff, please do call us on 01903 947035 or you may prefer to email us at

Convalescent care is like a stepping stone between hospital and home. When you are discharged from hospital after an operation, illness or injury, it is usually too much to go straight home and look after yourself while trying to recover. Convalescent care means all your day-to-day living and medical needs are looked after by professionals leaving you to time to focus on your recovery. RCH is like a full board hotel but with the addition of a friendly nursing team on hand day and night.

Respite care is your opportunity as a carer to have a rest from the demanding and stressful role of looking after someone whilst RCH steps into your role. As the person being cared for, respite is an opportunity to have a short break in different surroundings, to meet people your own age or to pamper yourself. And if you are not a carer or cared for but you need a holiday with medical care, then a respite break is perfect for you.

Are you going to hospital for an operation? Are you trying to recover after an illness, accident or injury? Do you need to take a break but need medical care? If you can answer yes to any of these, then convalescent care is definitely for you! Not only do we take care of your day-to-day living needs, we look after your medical issues too. Importantly, convalescent care can also prevent future complications and the need for further treatment.

A week’s stay at Rustington Convalescent Home will cost you only £850 per person per week. You may be surprised how low this cost is compared to other places. This is because RCH is a charity and heavily subsidises the cost of your stay – by up to 50% for each guest – so you get outstanding care and facilities for a fraction of the actual running costs.

Guests stay in a convalescent home for a short time only – usually a couple of weeks. The aim of a convalescent home is to help the guest get better so they able to go home after their stay feeling improved either mentally or physically or both. A residential or care home caters for those guests who need care for a longer period. A residential or care home is usually for long stay guests.

The average length of stay is one to two weeks but some guests may stay slightly longer.

Of course! You are welcome to return to RCH – space permitting of course. Guests who stay after an operation, illness or accident often then come back to stay for a respite break just because they love the place! And some respite guests come for their annual holiday! Our aim is to look after you and spoil you.

Included in the cost of a stay at RCH is a nourishing breakfast, a wholesome lunch and a cooked supper to round off the evening. A tasty selection of homemade snacks and refreshments including seasonal fruit and a variety of drinks are available throughout the day. You can expect plenty of high quality, fresh food which is locally sourced where possible. Because RCH is a charity and not run to make a profit, there are few budgetary constraints when it comes to the quality and quantity of food. The result is delicious meals packed with vitamins and minerals to suit all taste buds. And we are happy to adapt the menu, consistency or taste for any special dietary requirements, just let us know.

Yes. Chef is always happy to adapt his menus to suit your requirements. We cater for allergies, medical conditions and preferred tastes. Nothing is too much trouble so just let us know before you arrive if you have special dietary needs or keep us informed day-to-day and we will adapt the menus accordingly.

Booking a room is easy. Telephone us on 01903 783368 or email us at We look forward to hearing from you.

RCH offers en-suite bedrooms with medical provision and modern catering facilities. There are plenty of comfortable communal rooms including several lounges, a TV room and an activity room. The terrace and summerhouse are popular in the summer months. We also offer cards, quizzes, competitions and bingo. The facilities are comfortable, cosy and plentiful and the activities are available if you choose to take part but there is no obligation to do so.

You can do as much or as little as you wish at RCH. Some guests enjoy sitting quietly enjoying the view, reading the papers or watching TV whilst all their cleaning, cooking and laundry is done by the RCH staff! Some guests bring activities with them such as their painting or knitting equipment. Others love to join in all the activities on offer such as cards, quizzes, competitions and bingo. And then there are the gardens and local park to explore. Whilst we, of course, take your safety and health extremely seriously, you are welcome to do as much or as little as you wish.

During the night there is always a team of staff around to help you whatever the time. We work on a rota basis so you will always see a familiar face and we ensure there is a range of expertise available.

Yes, you do. All the bedrooms have their own en-suite bathrooms for your convenience and privacy. In addition, for the less mobile guests we have bedrooms with walk-in wet rooms.

We are very relaxed if you would like to personalise your bedroom at RCH with familiar belongings. Our aim is to help you get better in friendly, relaxed atmosphere, so if you would like to bring along small items that remind you of home, you are more than welcome to do so.

Yes, there are lifts to all floors.

Yes, our housekeeping staff work tirelessly to keep the place spotless. This is what one guest said recently: “Friends came to see me and had the expectation it was going to be like a hospital smelling of Dettol. But they said it’s like a hotel – it smells like and looks like a hotel.“ Bob, cancer recovery

Guests frequently walk around our gardens. There are plenty of benches so you can rest as you build up your stamina.

Yes! The house is very old but remarkably efficient. It is wonderfully cosy in the winter yet provides a welcome break from the heat when we have a hot summer. There are radiators in each bedroom so you can have your personal space as warm or as cool as you wish.

Anyone over the age of 18 is welcome at RCH. You don’t need to belong to or have any links with the Carpenters’ Company. If you need a friendly, kind and effective place for a respite break or for convalescence then RCH is the place to be!

A generous endowment from Sir Henry Harben forms the basis of the Trust Fund which is carefully managed by the Trustee – the Carpenters’ Company. The fund, together with donations from the public and companies throughout the UK, enable your stay to be heavily subsidised so you get excellent facilities and care for a fraction of the operating costs.

The Carpenters’ Company are one of the famous livery companies in the City of London. The livery companies are trade associations which were originally established as medieval unions to safeguard the welfare and interests of their members. The Carpenters’ Company is the Trustee of RCH.

Of course, donations to the charity are always gratefully received and go directly to the benefit of current and future guests at RCH.  Please see the “how to donate” details under Useful Information on the website.

We offer vital aftercare following a hospitalised procedure to ensure your patient’s recovery is managed effectively upon discharge from hospital. We also offer respite care for those struggling to cope with self-care or who need a fortifying break from being a carer. This results in less return visits to hospital, less drain on your stretched personnel and budgetary resources and a better, more positive outcome for your patient.

We follow all the legal and advisory guidelines set out by the Government. In addition, we, by the very nature of our jobs, always take extra care with our guests. Extra sanitising schedules are in place; masks are mandatory for all staff and visitor stays may be limited for the time being. Because the rules and regulations are fluent, please ask for our latest procedures.

RCH adheres to a strict safety policy. On the equipment side, fire extinguishers are located around the premises; these are checked annually and there is a rolling programme of replacement. All other equipment, such as smoke detectors and emergency lighting, is checked by an external contractor every three months. Fire alarms are tested weekly. Training is given to day staff twice yearly and night staff four times per year.

It is very rare that guests are not happy. However, if at any time you feel something is not right, you would like something changed or you need to talk to someone about a problem, then please do not hesitate to speak to any member of staff. If you prefer to discuss the issue with the Manager of RCH, her name is Julia Haynes and she very approachable and always around to help. If you would like full details of our complaints procedure, please just ask.

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