Active Ageing Programme: Progress to date

There are a number of different approaches being tested within this programme which will provide rich learning in terms of the process.

Here are some examples of the different approaches and the progress that has been made so far:


Age UK Bolton in partnership with Bolton Council and Bolton Arena are well underway to tackling inactivity by working with local partners to increase activity levels. Following an extensive research piece, creating an Activation brief, small investment pots were advertised through Bolton CVS for organisations/entrepreneurs to see how they could tackle inactivity. Key sessions which have been developed as a result of this are “Fit Steps Fab and Toddler Yoga”. These are key examples of how we are changing the norm in terms of activity and encouraging over 55’s to become and stay active.


Bury council have done some really powerful targeted work both in the community through consultation and also through the existing BEATS referral pathway. Those that are living with a Long term health condition are now involved in sessions such as “Hollins Village Green Gang & The Bay Horse Pub Chair Based Exercise Group”.


A place-based model at Debdale Outdoor Centre has been a real success to date offering over 55’s “A brew, a loo and something to do!” Both the indoor and outdoor space has been utilised to offer something for everyone. From kayaking on the lake to indoor curling, the participants have really developed ownership of the session. Due to the success of this session, the programme expanded into Newton Heath to adopt the same model at the Stirling Centre. This revolves around a social eating model to bring people together. An evening “Social Paddle” session has also been developed at Debdale to appeal to those that are still in work or may have responsibilities during the day. As part of the PALs (Physical Activity Leaders) course, 5 older adults have successful completed this and are delivering physical activity within sessions such as a gardening group & a freelance cooking group.


Rochdale have targeted those who have caring responsibilities and may find it much more difficult to become and maintain being active. Through extensive work with the Rochdale Carer’s hub, Link4Life have created a successful programme developing a real insight into the barriers and challenges that carers face in becoming active. Examples of key successful sessions have been Hollingsworth Lake Nature Walks, Walking Netball and many more.


Inspiring Communities Together, in partnership with Age UK Salford, Salford Council and Salford Community Leisure have developed a “Move and Improve” timetable of session based of small investment pot opportunities through Salford CVS. The development of the sessions have been supported by the Active Ageing Development worker. Sessions such as “Walking Rugby and canal-a-size” are starting to be a real success for Swinton.


Stockport Council in partnership with Age UK Stockport, Life Leisure and Stockport Homes have worked together to develop a referral pathway for those that may need additional support after a significant life changing event such as entering retirement, bereavement etc. Age UK have been vital in support the transition into activity delivered by Life Leisure. Peer mentors have been trained to “buddy and support” individuals to sessions. A number of sessions which have been popular through the programme are SMILE sessions, Eazy riders and many more. Age UK have also just started to develop their existing befriending offer into a “Walk and Talk” service. This has shown to be popular resulting in a large increase in volunteer sign ups.


Active Tameside have been working to engage with those 55-64 living in St Peters and Stalybridge. After a successful consultation period working with GP’s identifying those at risk, around 80 individuals attending an afternoon tea to discuss how they might like to become active within their areas. Examples of sessions which have been developed within local communities are Tai Chi, Walk and Talk and targeted sessions working with Diversity Matters support the BAME communities to become active.


After an initial market research piece conducted by Mustard, followed by focus groups with the inactive, Trafford Council have commissioned a number of key partners to deliver and support the inactive to “take the step” into activity across west Trafford. Examples of these are: Walking Cricket delivered by LCCC, the Citizen Forrester walks, working with the local GoodGym trainer to add physical activity into existing social groups along with the development of age well champions across the borough.