Awards for All - Creative Community Conversations on Ageing

Making our city a great place to grow old in

Over the last few years, the Elders Council has been working to create opportunities for older people to meet others and take part in interesting and sometimes challenging activities. The reason we have made this an important part of our work is because evidence shows that people who have strong networks of friends and family, and who take part in social activities, enjoy a happier and healthier older age.

Through our small grants programme, Staying Connected, we have supported over 40 groups to try out a new activity. We have held events where the groups that received the funding have come together to share what they have done. We have now published a report on our Staying Connected programme which tells the story of what we did and what we have learned along the way. The report is available - click here.

Reflecting on what we have learned from Bridging the Gaps, Staying Connected and the small research project we did on ‘Growing older in my home and neighbourhood’, we wanted to continue this work by having conversations with older people in different parts of the city. We applied to Awards for All (Big Lottery Fund) and were successful in receiving funding to enable us to host community conversations in five areas of the city.

It wasn't easy trying to decide which areas of the city to work in, but after weighing up a number of different factors, we selected the following areas: Cowgate, Kenton Bar, Montagu, Dinnington and Chapel House. We engaged with older people living in these areas in planning how and when we held the conversations.

To hear more about the conversations and our findings, please refer to the reports below:

Community Conversations in Newcastle

Community Conversations in Dinnington

We also commissioned an evaluation of this work, which was conducted by Moyra Riseborough, Consultant. Please refer to the report below:

Evaluating Creative Community Conversations

Getting By with a Little Help: exploring alternative models of care and support at home


As older people, we know that social care is in urgent need of reform with fewer people getting the help they might need to remain independent at home.  A group of Elders Council members set out to explore alternative models of care and support.  Their findings are available in a report in the Reports section of the website.  Elders Council is now discussing the findings with Newcastle City Council and others in the hope that more innovative models of care will be offered in the city.