The Living Home Standard Report

This week saw the housing charity Shelter release the Living Home Standard report, an investigation into the state of the property market in Britain.

This research was part of a concerted effort to discuss the reality of people’s housing situations, rather than simply listing facts and figures. Shelter also wished to discover what words such as “affordable” and “security” mean to regular people, seeing as such phrases are repeatedly used by policy makers and charities.

The report emerged from nine months of consultation with the public, and lists thirty-nine criteria that houses and flats must meet to protect the occupants’ wellbeing. These criteria have then been divided into five key areas: affordability, decent conditions, space, stability, and neighbourhood.

It was incredibly concerning to read that a further survey of nearly 2.000 people found that 43% of Britons live in homes or flats that do not meet the guideline’s standards. More worryingly still, London was the city with the highest number of homes to fail the criteria, with 73% of people questioned stating that their home did not meet the standards set.

Affordability was rated as the most important criteria for an acceptable home, but sadly 27% of those surveyed said their home failed at least one of the affordability categories. Shelter also found that 24% of respondents were unable to save for unexpected costs after paying their rent and a further 18% struggled to meet their property costs without frequently cutting back on food or heating.


73% of Londoners questioned stated that their home did not meet the standards set by Shelter’s report.

Age UK London has been carrying out research into the rental market as part of our Older Private Sector Tenants Programme – funded by The Nationwide Foundation. This investigation has taken the form of a series of focus groups over the last few months in which older private renters have the opportunity to air their grievances with the rental market.

Unfortunately, the information uncovered by Shelter does not come as a surprise – it correlates with the findings from our focus groups. Throughout our research we have repeatedly heard how high rent prices affect the living standards of older people, many of whom are unable to work to supplement their fixed pensions.

Other findings match up to the Living Home Standard report too, not least the difficulties caused by insufficient space and short term leases –  especially since the latter allows landlords to make frequent rent increases.

Accordingly, Shelter has proposed stable rental contracts that last for five years, to allow renters to feel more secure in their tenancy agreement. The charity has also called on the government, businesses, and other charities to help increase the number of the homes that reach the set standards. Such measures match with the requests from a number of our focus group attendees.

We now hope to use the research from our Older Private Sector Tenants Programme to contribute to Shelter’s mission of allowing people to “thrive” in their homes, rather than simply “getting by”.

If you are a private renter over the age of fifty and would like to talk about your experiences, then we would like to interview you! To book a confidential interview, contact us with your name and telephone number on: 0207 820 6770 or email our research team –

Coming Out in Later Life

This past week saw the celebration of National Coming Out Day (NCOD), an annual day for the recognition of the LGBTQ+ community and the coming out process. Normally my involvement in NCOD is limited to scrolling through posts from friends on social media which detail their past experiences of coming out.

However, this year I was struck by an article from 2015, which stated that “coming out in later life is a growing trend”. As a result I began to think as to why that might be the case, and to look into the challenges older LGBTQ+ people face when coming out.

First and foremost, the article spoke of the effect that legal changes have played in convincing older people to publically express their sexuality or gender identity. For many, it is witnessing the removal of laws that forced them to remain in the closet throughout much of their lives that provides the confidence to come out to friends and family.

These alterations to the legal system represent – and in turn, continue to cause – a marked shift in society’s attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community, with far greater acceptance towards “experimentation, fluidity, and expression nowadays”.

This has been reflected within popular culture too, with programmes such as Last Tango in Halifax featuring a prominent storyline that explored a lesbian relationship. Likewise, Boy Meets Girl represented the first BBC comedy to focus upon transgender issues and also the first to star a transgender actress – Rebecca Root.

Yet it’s more than just the representation of LGBTQ+ characters on national television that has made more older people feel comfortable in coming out, it’s also the positive reaction to these shows.

Sarah Lancashire – star of Last Tango in Halifax – has received a number of letters from older women who were inspired to publically express their sexuality after watching the show. Meanwhile Boy Meets Girl was credited for it’s portrayal of lead character Judy, which avoided the patronising or mocking tone that has typically accompanied transgender characters on television. The reactions to both shows are a far cry from the uproar caused when Brookside aired the first lesbian kiss back in 1994.

Sarah Lancashire's character, Caroline, inspired many older people to come out.

Sarah Lancashire’s character, Caroline, inspired many older people to come out.

However, despite this shift in society’s attitudes to gender and sexuality, there remain a number of challenges faced by older LGBTQ+ people who attempt to leave the closet.

The majority relate to familial concerns: for many, to come out is to end a long-term heterosexual partnership, which can lead to fractious relationships with former spouses, in-laws, and even their own children. Even without a long-standing relationship, years of remaining closeted can lead to negative reactions from family members. There are also fears of starting the process too late and the resultant difficulty of adapting to new and unfamiliar cultures.

Furthermore, having grown up in a society that was less tolerant of matters relating to gender and sexuality, some older LGBTQ+ people continue to face instances of homo/bi/transphobia within care facilities. As a result, many remain closeted and some even return to the closet to avoid discrimination.

Older transgender people face additional concerns, as age-related health conditions can delay the transition process. This can be especially demoralising, as some older transgender people are “often in a hurry to transition after a lifetime of hiding their true gender identity”.

Yet this is not to say that there are no positives to coming out in later life – far from it. For many, the opportunity to live life as their true sexuality or gender identity provides a huge feeling of relief and happiness.

If National Coming Out Day implies anything, it is that there is no “right” way or time to come out – it is a case of when it feels right for the individual. Certainly there are difficulties for older LGBTQ+ people, but as mentioned, there is also a far more tolerant society to come out into and a series of support networks to ease the process.

For access to information and support services, please contact Opening Doors London, a charity that supports older LGBTQ+ people in the capital.

Ageism in Film #1 – The Lady in the Van

Welcome to the first edition of our new monthly series on ageism in film. This week Danny Elliott subjects The Lady in the Van to Peter Bradshaw’s Bechdel Test for Ageism.

Although Peter Bradshaw points out that older women are the social group that find it hardest to come by major roles,  the first film I’m going to look at stars, and is dominated by, Dame Maggie Smith. The 81 year old played Miss Shepherd in ‘The Lady in the Van’, 16 years after she first performed the role on stage in Alan Bennett’s play of the same name.

Maggie Smith is a ‘national treasure’. That may be slightly patronising, but is definitely heartfelt. Playing Professor McGonagall in the Harry Potter series endeared her to younger audiences and the Dowager Countess’ arched eyebrows in Downton Abbey cemented her place in the modern public consciousness. The first film I can remember seeing her in was Sister Act, playing the ever-so-serious Reverend Mother, but The Lady in the Van allows Smith to display her comic timing in amongst the more sombre scenes.

The plot, based on a true story, revolves around Miss Shepherd (Maggie Smith), who lives with all her worldly possessions in a van, as she temporarily parks on Alan Bennett’s drive, only to stay there for 15 years.

IMDB calls Miss Shepherd ‘transient’.  The truth is that she’s homeless. I don’t think the film sufficiently gets across how awful it is that an older lady, who is often very distressed, is homeless in London. Is a van a suitable home? I certainly don’t think so.

The Lady in the Van, starring Maggie Smith and Alex Jennings. Photograph: Allstar/BBC FILMS

The Lady in the Van, starring Maggie Smith and Alex Jennings. Photograph: Allstar/BBC FILMS

London has a housing problem, as well as an ageing population and an increase in older private renters; Maureen Crane & Louise Joly from the Social Care Workforce Research Unit, King’s College London, say there were 710 rough sleepers aged 56+ in London in 2014/15 – a 105% increase from 2004/05.

Remember that Miss Shepherd was a real person who lived on Alan Bennett’s driveway for 15 years. She wasn’t being quirky, cool or awkward; it’s tragic.

In the film Bennett himself struggles with the fact that his own mother has to leave the family home and live in a care home. He talks to himself wondering whether giving Miss Shepherd a parking space will purge any guilt he has over his mother’s situation.

I really connected with his struggle. I’m a northerner living in London with ageing parents and in-laws. What does the future look like? I really don’t know.


Miss Shepherd was a real person who lived on Alan Bennett’s driveway for 15 years. She wasn’t being quirky, cool or awkward; it’s tragic.

A key question asked throughout the film is whether older people are a burden on individuals.

Bennett’s neighbours in Gloucester Crescent, Camden Town initially try and engage with Miss Shepherd, bringing her homemade cakes and politely introducing her to their children. All is well while she is parked at the other end of the street…

Bennett himself has the heart to allow her to park on his drive (and sometimes use his facilities) but when a social worker quizzes Bennett about their relationship, Bennett attempts to distance himself from Miss Shepherd:

Miss Briscoe, Social Worker: She tells me you don’t encourage her to get out and lead a more purposeful life, and put obstacles in her way.

Alan Bennett: I don’t encourage her to think she can become prime minister. I *do* encourage her to try and get to the supermarket.

Miss Briscoe, Social Worker: Yes. A carer will often feel that…

Alan Bennett: Excuse me, may I stop you? Do not call me the carer. I am not the carer. I hate caring. I hate the thought. I hate the word. I do not care, and I do not care for. I am here, she is there. There is no caring.

Miss Briscoe, Social Worker: Alan, I’m sensing hostility again.

Bennett can be seen struggling with the potential responsibility of caring for two older women; his mother and Miss Shepherd. While he is sad when he no longer has responsibility for caring for them, he is also honest enough to admit that he is relieved.

Older people often feel that they are a burden to society. Alan Bennett is portrayed as an individual who sometimes feels burdened, often without any resentment at all.

Society as a whole must shoulder responsibility and ensure that older people do not feel they are a burden. The huge contribution of older people to our society is an issue Age UK London have campaigned on before, and we have seen recent pieces of work that encourage this idea.

More needs to be done to ensure that attitudes change in this area.


Alan Bennett is portrayed as an individual who sometimes feels burdened, often without any resentment at all.

I don’t want to post any huge spoilers, but it’s revealed that Miss Shepherd’s life has been full of great highs and tremendous lows. The film does a good job of showing us what effect the lows had on the character, but very few of her former glories are showcased. The one scene which shows Miss Shepherd reliving her younger years is tinged with sadness and becomes so unbearably hard for her that she can’t continue for long.

As this is based on a true story, one can’t complain either way, but I’m personally satisfied with how the film ends, rather than a Hollywood-style renaissance. Not every story gets a happy ending, and the fond memories and funny stories Alan Bennett has of Miss Shepherd, while something, don’t wipe out the terribly sad narrative that has gone before.

The Lady in the Van deals with some major age related issues, and stars one of the best older performers out there. Maggie Smith was nominated for both a Golden Globe and BAFTA for her performance in the film, but ultimately won neither.

Second place isn’t bad for someone her age though, right?

Wrong – that’s just ageist.

Peter Bradshaw’s Bechdel Test Score: 2/6

The Bechdel Test for Ageism

Earlier this month Peter Bradshaw, the Guardian’s Film Critic, wrote a piece about a recent University of Southern California study indicating that ageism is rife in films.

Bradshaw says:

“Only 11% of characters in the top-grossing films of 2016 are older than 60, compared with 18.5% of the overall population… Well, it’s quite true – and complicated by sexism. Older characters become invisible, but the women go first. In contemporary drama, old people can be snowy-haired, unimportant grandparents. Or they can be homeless people.”

I’m sure we would all welcome more diversity on the silver screen, and not just regarding age.

Funnily enough, as I read the piece I started to think through the surprisingly large number of films, and a few TV shows, I’d watched over the last year or so that either starred older actors or dealt with age issues:

Harry Brown, Grace and Frankie, Nebraska, Still Alice, Last Chance Harvey, The Quartet, Last Vegas, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Little Miss Sunshine, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Philomena, August: Osage County, and What We Did on Our Holiday.

That list represents a fair amount of screen-time.

Hollywood Sign

Only 11% of characters in the top-grossing films of 2016 are older than 60

For me whether or not older people are fairly or under-represented in this area, while important, is not as interesting as exploring how the older characters who do exist are actually portrayed, alongside how age related issues that these films throw up are dealt with.

Bradshaw clearly has a similar interest as he suggests an adapted version of the Bechdel Test for ageism in films scoring on six points, including: the number of unrelated older people portrayed; whether the older characters are seen on their own; whether they talk about stereotypical topics (eg. Grandchildren, illness); the setting of the film; and – fantastically – if an older person dies in the film, whether there is “another older character who thinks the dead character was a bit of a pain in the arse.”

Oh, and whether or not Celia Imrie is in the cast.

As part of a new series for the Age UK London Blog, I’ll place one film a month under the microscope and use Bradshaw’s Bechdel Test to rank the level of ageism present.

Make sure to tune in next week as I discuss The Lady in the Van starring Dame Maggie Smith.

Why is it so Hard for Older People to Downsize?

With the housing crisis hitting younger people hard – particularly in London – it would appear sensible, on the surface, for older people to downsize so that younger people can find somewhere to live with a bit more space.

So, why is this hardly happening? The answer is that it often actually costs more to downsize than stay where you are; living somewhere smaller can be more expensive.

Moving house in London can cost at least £30,000 just for the stamp duty, solicitors’ and surveyors’ fees and removal costs – and that doesn’t take into account that smaller houses are not necessarily much cheaper.

The value of a house doesn’t increase necessarily in proportion with size and older people may find that the drop in price of a smaller property will be subsumed by the costs of moving. When you place that fact alongside the aggravation of moving, it’s no wonder that older people prefer to stay in their larger homes, even if they do cost more to heat.


Moving house in London can cost at least £30,000

Even getting a mortgage to cover costs at an older age is almost impossible. Most lenders are reluctant to take on older people who may not have as long left to pay off the loan – even if they do have a decent amount of savings.

A person’s home is not just bricks and mortar, or an investment for an individual; homes hold treasured memories and echoes of the past that people find difficult to break ties with.

Your home is the place where you brought up your children, where you spent time with friends and loved ones. Why leave all that behind when there is no financial incentive to downsize and you’re approaching a time when you want to be in familiar surroundings?

Until the government introduces some sort of motivation such as tax relief on people downsizing home, it looks like we will continue to have a generation of older people living in homes that may now be too big for them, but make sense in every other way.

TfL Launches “Please Offer me a Seat” Badge

This Monday saw Transport for London (TfL) launch the trial of a new badge to help disabled passengers and those with hidden conditions, illnesses, and injuries to access a seat on public transport.

Similar to the popular “Baby on Board” badges, the new “Please Offer me a Seat” badge will be trialled for six weeks to assess its usefulness for passengers and to gauge the reactions of others.

As well as a blue badge to alert fellow passengers of their need for a seat on public transport, those taking part in the trial will also receive a card to display to TfL staff. A successful trial period will see the badge made available more widely later in the year.

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan spoke positively of the campaign:

`We hope that these new blue badges can make a real difference to those who find it difficult to get a seat when they need one, particularly those with hidden disabilities. Everyone who travels around London knows about the success of the Baby on Board badges. I want Londoners to embrace our new trial and help these blue badges become as instantly-recognisable, giving confidence to those wearing them on public transport across London.’

TfL's new "Please Offer me a Seat" badge

The new badges will be trialled for six weeks

A brief scroll through the reactions to Sadiq Khan’s message indicates an encouragingly high level of support for the idea. Lots of commenters with hidden disabilities have described the difficulties they face on public transport and feel the new badges will make it far easier to access a seat – especially at rush hour.

Several people discussed how having no visible illness or condition often saw their requests for a seat met with contempt and welcomed the new campaign as a result. One commenter even stated that this new initiative would encourage them to start using the tube for the first time in years.

Others pointed out that some passengers worry about offending those who are standing by offering them a seat and that the new badge would help to combat this.

However some scepticism remains. Many argued that the Baby on Board badges are ineffectual and doubt the effectiveness of a similar scheme. This is mainly attributed to passengers being distracted by their phones, but there is also a suggestion that some purposefully ignore the badges.

As a result, several commenters advocated further education alongside the new campaign, with some suggesting a “please ask for my seat” badge to tackle the problem from both sides.

From our perspective at Age UK London, we are encouraged by the potential of the “Please Offer me a Seat” badge and look forward to viewing the reaction throughout the trial period. The new initiative should make travelling around London a far more pleasant experience for a number of older people, especially if – as promised – TfL promote the badge effectively through customer information and social media.

A potential downside of the scheme could be that seats are only offered to older passengers that are wearing a badge, but it seems best to approach the trial with an open mind at this earlier stage.

We welcome any research and consultation into improving travel experiences for older Londoners and are very much interested in viewing the results of this trial period.

So, keep a look out for the new blue badges over the next few weeks, and for more information on TfL’s new seating card and badge, TfL’s Travel Support card or any other accessibility initiatives please visit

Attendance Allowance – A Vital Lifeline

Attendance Allowance is a weekly payment that allows disabled older people to meet some of the extra costs that they face. It is a lifeline for over a million older people, allowing many to go on living independently in their homes.

Now the Government is proposing to devolve it to local Councils instead of distributing the money centrally as happens at the moment. It is part of a consultation on local government finance, following the decision to allow Councils to keep 100% of local business rates – link to consultation open till 26 September.

This is worrying for more than one reason. In future, the money risks no longer being available for disabled older people if it is not ring fenced. The proposed change is coming at a time when there is huge pressure on funding for adult social care delivered by local councils. Age UK London pointed out in its manifesto for the 2016 London Mayoral election, that an estimated 94,000 older people in London have long term care needs that aren’t met by official services. This gap is likely to grow given the ageing population and the prospect of austerity continuing. It would be very tempting for hard pressed Councils to take money from Attendance Allowance to plug the holes in their main social care budget if they were able to.

The need for Attendance Allowance itself is probably going to grow a lot with the growth in the number of older people. Age UK estimates show demand for Attendance Allowance growing by up to 47% in London boroughs (and 50% for the City of London) from 2015 to 2025. This is based on demographic ageing, and assuming the current eligibility criteria remain. In the majority of boroughs, needs would rise by over 30%. Would Councils be willing to raise business rates sufficiently to meet increased needs?

If AA is devolved, who will be eligible for it in future? If local authorities have discretion over it, won’t this recreate the type of postcode lottery that used to exist for social care before the Care Act, with older people with similar needs getting very different responses in different local areas?

Age UK has started an open letter urging the Government not to transfer Attendance Allowance to local authorities. You can find the letter here and if you’re concerned about this subject, please sign it and pass it on to people you know!

Don’t Get Left in the Dark – Call 105!

This week saw the launch of a brand new national phone number – “105” – which customers can use to report or receive information about a power cut in their area. In the past, many people have mistakenly called their energy supply companies in the event of a power cut, rather than their local electricity network operator.

The introduction of 105 aims to solve this problem by providing people with an easy-to-remember number that will put them straight through to their local electricity network operator.

Electricity network operators manage and maintain the underground cables, overhead wires, and substations that bring electricity into homes and businesses. They are the organisations that people should contact if they experience a power cut – no matter who they pay their bill to.

This week we had the chance to speak to Kerry Potter – Customer Vulnerability Manager at UK Power Networks – to find out more:

“I’m really proud to let you know about a new telephone number that you can call 24 hours a day if you ever have a power cut. Here at UK Power Networks we’ve been working with other electricity companies across the UK to make sure anyone across England, Scotland, or Wales can call to get through to the right company during a power cut.

So we are excited to tell you that you can now call “105” – a new free telephone number that anyone can call to report or get information about power cuts, report welfare concerns related to a power cut, or safety issues around underground or overhead electricity cables or substations.

If you ring this number, you will be put through to your local electricity distribution company – which for London, East Anglia, and the South East is UK Power Networks.

Hopefully you agree that 105 is easy to remember, and be assured that our customer services team – who are constantly in touch with engineers in the field – will get you the information you need, when you need it.

You can still call us on 0800 31 63 105, which is also free from a mobile. Plus you can tweet or Facebook us, or visit our website. This is just another easy way for you to contact us – please see for more information.

Vulnerable customers who would like to sign up to our Priority Services Register can still call 0800 169 9970, email or apply online at

So, there we have it! If you experience a power cut or have safety concerns surrounding electricity cables or substations you now know the best number to call – 105.

Why “Generation Rent” Has No Age Limit

“Will I ever be able to afford my own home?”

It’s a horrible question to have to ask yourself, but this is the current reality for an entire generation of young people in Britain. As home ownership has now reached its lowest level for the last thirty years, The Guardian recently hosted an online debate to discuss whether members of the public should now give up the dream of ever owning their own home.

Though the primary complaint was the cost of purchasing housing, many made the point that the poor state of the rental market has worsened the problem by denying would-be homeowners a viable alternative to owning their own property.

Here at Age UK London, we’re currently working alongside the Nationwide Foundation on our Older Private Sector Tenants Programme – an 18-month project that will focus on the challenges and vulnerabilities faced by older renters in the capital.

As part of our research for this project we have conducted a series of focus groups. By viewing our findings alongside the experiences of younger renters from the Guardian debate, it is clear that renters of all ages are affected in very similar ways by poor state of the market.

Older Private Rent Paperwork

Should members of the public give up the dream of ever owning their own home?

Whilst one commenter questioned what would happen to renters when they retire in the future, we know from our research that older renters are already experiencing a whole host of problems – many of which are shared with their younger counterparts. Yet despite this, few seem to be making this connection and the debates surrounding the renting crisis are frequently framed in terms of conflict between the generations.

So, what are these shared concerns? Firstly, many are worried by the power landlords hold over their tenants and the lack of security that this provides. This tends to manifest itself in a combination of extremely high rent prices and short-term contracts, which allow for further rent increases at brief intervals.

These costs increase further when added to the letting fees that must be paid every time a new property is rented, which is a frequent problem given the aforementioned short leases and continual rent increases.

The overall feeling of powerlessness is worsened by the behaviour of certain landlords, who charge high prices for poorly maintained properties, or evict tenants at short notice. As Dan Wilson Craw (Policy Manager for Generation Rent) points out in the Guardian article, for many, the homeownership dream is fuelled by their distrust of the rental sector:

“The most important thing people want in a home is a space that is theirs, which they can’t be thrown out of for no good reason. That is something that today’s private rented sector fundamentally cannot offer.”

Meanwhile, respondents were also keen to point out the stigma that surrounds those who rent property, especially as they get older. Many noted that British political culture champions homeownership over renting, which can lead many renters to feel inferior to their home-owning peers. There were repeated comparisons with the situation abroad, as the long-term leases available in Germany and France were put forward as a far more progressive system in which renters felt protected and respected.

The rent market leaves many older people feeling trapped and vulnerable

Many renters say they feel trapped and vulnerable

Each of the points raised would be concerning enough on their own, but sadly these are not individual problems. Instead, these issues combine together to leave renters of all ages feeling trapped and vulnerable in the one place they should feel most secure.

However, despite clear evidence that the poor state of the rental market is an intergenerational concern, this debate is frequently presented in terms of the older generation taking away from their younger counterparts. This can be seen to stem from the beliefs of a vocal minority that all older people are somehow at fault for the problems of the younger generation.

Yet to take aim at an entire generation of older people is to miss the nuances of this particular problem. Firstly, the aforementioned well-protected landlords can be found across the majority of age groups, and secondly, in London alone there are over 140,000 private renters aged 50+ who struggle alongside their younger counterparts under these regulations.

For renters on fixed pensions in particular, the instability of rent prices and contracts is a genuine threat to their wellbeing – just as it is for young workers on low salaries.

As one reader summed up clearly within the debate:

“This shouldn’t be a generational fight. Placing blame on each other for society’s ills is just what the government wants.”

The media has a role to play too – several focus group participants have pointed out a lack of coverage around the problems faced by older renters.

So, rather than younger renters taking pot-shots at “Baby Boomers”, or older people bemoaning “Millennials”, we should instead be encouraging cooperation between the generations to hit back at the poor state of the rental market.

If greater awareness of the intergenerational nature of these problems can be raised, there’s a chance that this cooperation may start to develop and we might finally start to see some changes.


Taking Care of Business: The Age UK London Business Directory

The Age UK London Business Directory is a catalogue of companies that have had all of their credentials checked and vetted by the Business Directory’s staff. The service helps to protect older people from rogue traders by only putting them in contact with the Business Directory’s trusted companies. This week I spoke to the Business Directory’s Marketing and Sales Officer Jessica Jarvis to find out more about the service and how things have changed this year:

“Over the past few months we have been working to improve our service – not only for our customers, but for our businesses too. The changes we have made make it easier for our customers to find the service they are after and there is also lots of useful information and advice online about using the directory and how to avoid scams. We pride ourselves on bringing you the best businesses possible; we do this by checking every business that joins us to ensure they are professional and reliable. These checks include:

  • A face-to-face meeting with one of our team members
  • A form of identification
  • A copy of their public liability insurance  schedule and employers’ liability insurance or professional indemnity insurance, if applicable
  • Copies of membership certificates for any trade associations or professional bodies
  • Names and addresses for a minimum of three customer references
  • We require that they sign up to our customer charter
  • We also require that they sign a trading standards declaration

As well as the typical businesses like plumbers and electricians, there was also demand for alternative services that are specifically designed to help older people live more independently and to love later life. We have now expanded our services as a result. We offer everything from flooring to financial services and disability adaptations to hairdressing. If you are not sure if we can help or if you know of a business that could be on the Directory, please get in touch with us today! We have a dedicated team that are here to help, call us today on 0800 334 5056.

The Business Directory has a list of fully vetted companies including gardeners

We get fantastic support from all the local Age UK’s and we want to do the same for them. That’s why we have been building free profiles for each London borough which contains all the services that they can provide to the customers in their local area. This helps us to connect more people with their local Age UK and also allows them to find the best possible service.”

If you are a local Age UK and would like more information about how the Business Directory can help you, then please contact Jessica Jarvis – She can help you update the content on your website and even pay a visit to talk to your reception volunteers and staff about the Business Directory.

You can also visit the Business Directory’s Advisors page online for some more information and helpful guides.