UK & World News
Survey: Britain Embracing Grey Generation
Community spirit is flying high among the UK's older population despite declining local services, according to a new survey.
The findings, released by older people's charity Anchor, firmly place older people at the heart of their local communities, with 80% saying they feel part of where they live.
The survey found 84% of over 65s feel that they are respected by local people and roughly the same number say they know their neighbours' names.
But the findings also flagged some areas of concern.
Just under half of all respondents said they felt services for older people had declined in the last 10 years, a third went as far as saying services for older people in their area were 'poor' and more than a fifth would not recommend their area as a good place for older people to live.
Over a third felt that their local council was not interested in the needs of older people and under half said their local council was not active in improving their area to cater for older people's needs.
Jane Ashcroft, chief executive at Anchor, said: "It is encouraging to see that so many older people are playing an important part in their local communities.
"Sadly, it is not the case for all older people and must be actively encouraged and led by local authorities.
"It is very positive that a number of towns included in the Anchor research have Older People's Champions to do this and other local authorities should learn from them. That is also why our Grey Pride campaign calls on the Government to appoint a minister for Older People.
"Preparing effectively for demographic change doesn't just help today's older people, it is also crucial for the generations to come."
Keith Arscott, chief executive at Contact the Elderly, said: "It's encouraging to see the positive results of the survey and to hear that many communities are supporting their older residents.
"However, we must also remember that even though many older people may know their neighbours' names, they may not mix with them socially as much so it's important for people to make time to talk to this generation and realise how much they have to offer the wider community."