Saddleworth and Lees is celebrating after being named as one of the best places in Greater Manchester to grow old.
Last year we entered the district into the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Age Friendly Challenge, an award scheme designed to help find the people, projects and places that are in place to support residents.
Recently we heard that our entry had been successful and that Saddleworth and Lees had been named as an Age-Friendly Neighbourhood.
Saddleworth and Lees now joins Alexandra, Crompton and Failsworth West wards which were all previously awarded Age Friendly status.
The awards recognise all the good work being carried out by a wide-range of organisations and groups, including the council, GPs, churches, residents, volunteers and partners.
There are a significant number of people aged over 50 in Saddleworth and Lees and much of the age-friendly work has developed within communities who have developed residents’ groups and community associations
Examples of good practice include:
- The Memory Café – Housing and Care 21, Lido House Grotton runs a monthly coffee morning for people with dementia which is open to the wider community
- Exercise classes for people with Parkinson’s disease – held fortnightly at the Satellite Centre
- A Community Matron service which is part of the primary care offer and links vulnerable older people into groups and activities
- Age UK Oldham PIP Service (Promoting Independent People) helping people to remain independent in their community, by reducing isolation and increasing confidence.
- Brunch clubs are held in pubs as are some coffee mornings – to encourage and connect people who may be isolated
- Men in Sheds and Slimmin Without Women – are bespoke activities for men
- She Sheds – DIY for ladies
- Groups for carers – in local churches and at the Museum
- A sight Loss group at Sacred Heart Church
- The library service works with the RNIB and produces audiobooks for people experiencing sight loss
Representatives from Saddleworth and Lees attended an event in Manchester and received an award recognising their good work from Andy Burnham.
Residents who attended the event said: “It’s great to know that what we are doing at a local level fits into a much bigger picture. It’s good to link in with other community organisations in Saddleworth and Lees and then get inspiration from other groups around Greater Manchester.”
Councillor Arooj Shah, Deputy Leader of Oldham Council and Cabinet Member for Social Justice and Communities, said: “We are all growing older so making sure the proper help and support, with regards to housing, work, culture, health and transport, is in pace is important.
“Saddleworth and Lees is a great example of how the voluntary sector, public services and older people’s groups can work together to help improve our communities.
“Congratulations to everyone who made this latest award happen, and also the people in Alexandra, Crompton and Failsworth West.”
Since the awards started 53 neighbourhoods, across all 10 boroughs of Greater Manchester, have been recognised as age-friendly.
Andy Burnham added: “All of our age-friendly challenge winners should be proud of the incredible work they are doing to make Greater Manchester a great place to grow older.”
More information on the challenge can be found here: https://www.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk/what-we-do/ageing/mayors-age-friendly-challenge/