Smerdon was opened in 1981 to help meet the needs of local adults with learning disabilities. In fact the original manager Patrick still visits weekly as a volunteer, and Lynn who is the bookkeeper has worked there continuously since it opened. This element of continuity is rare in the care industry. The current manager Gina has been there for the past 30 years. She is highly regarded by service users and their families who have described her as an anchor, especially in times of change.
The centre provides many on-site living skills activities including cookery and healthy eating, arts and crafts, drama and music. Many different therapies are offered to service users including physiotherapy, pet therapy, sensory and aromatherapy. Massage is also available. These activities and therapies are supplemented by many off-site activities including sports and swimming, educational trips and work experience. Smerdon has three enterprises that service users are actively involved in through film-making, card-making and a gardening service.
Where special care is required, the centre can provide a sensory room with specialist carers.