Our ambition is to be the best city for people to grow old in, which means we actively celebrate and promote positive ageing for all Leeds citizens.
As our population grows older and Leeds gets bigger, we want to make sure we take into account the health and quality of life for older adults.
Inspired by the Age Friendly Cities Network, Leeds City Council’s Age Friendly Leeds Partnership is working to make Leeds a place where people of all ages can join in, and be part of, what the city has to offer.
So how can you get involved?
The Age Friendly Charter - A new Charter has been produced listing six positive Age Friendly statements and pledges to help make the city age friendly. During the consultation process, key themes emerged. Housing, health services, outdoor space and transportation were of particular concern to older people.
We’re asking everyone including businesses, individual, schools and community groups to join in and make a pledge to make Leeds an age friendly city. You can help make a difference by signing up to the charter.
Here are some examples of positive work already taking place:
Keeping upright is one of the best ways to stay independent and active. The Is it Fallproof? (PDF 1.8 MB) campaign provides lots of practical tips that can help.
Being active is another way of keeping fit and also has social benefits as well as the Dancing in Time project shows.
Winter Friends is a scheme that encourages people to take better care during the winter and offers friendly advice and support.
If you or someone you know is living with dementia and would like help and support the Leeds Dementia Action Alliance can help.
The Health and wellbeing strategy (PDF 1.2MB) has more information about how older people are being helped.
Wharfedale View - Extra Care Living is now open. Extra care housing offers older people independent living in a home of their own with services on hand if they need them. It enables people to self-care for longer and helps them retain their independence. Extra care housing is about quality of life – not just quality of care.
Me and My Home: an older person’s housing strategy is being written with the help of older people. It responds to their needs and sets clear targets for future housing developments.
The Leeds Housing Needs Survey has recently sent to a sample of households throughout Leeds, but we’re happy to hear from all Leeds residents - even if you didn’t get a survey in the post. You can complete the survey by clicking on the link. What you tell us will help make sure Leeds gets the right mix of housing types, sizes and affordable homes that people need.
Care and Repair Leeds offer information and services to help older people stay in their homes for longer.
Visiting parks and other public green spaces is a great way to relax and get some exercise, and has been proven to improve the physical and mental health of people of all ages. There are hundreds of green spaces in the city including nature reserves, recreation grounds, public rights of way, woodlands, allotments and 70 parks, so there should be one near you!
Most of the parks in Leeds have facilities for older people including accessible paths and benches, and they host a range of features for people with a wide variety of interests to enjoy, from wildlife to sport, horticulture to history, cycle routes to café stops. Over 700 events take place in parks every year too including the popular summer band concerts. For more information visit our Parks and Countryside pages and check out our events leaflet (PDF 2.51MB).
Here are some examples of ways we're making travel easier for older people:
- The Council’s passenger transport service helps older people access vital services such as care centres and community activity groups every day.
- The WY Metro Access bus means people can access activities and get out in their local area.
- Travel Assistance Cards are available which tell bus drivers discretely what extra help you might need. This may include needing more time to get to a seat or asking the driver to speak up.
- Many of the Neighbourhood Networks also provide transport to help people get to activities.
- Getting Around Leeds (PDF 281KB) is a helpful guide for older road users, with advice and information on a variety of methods of transport and tips on what to consider when you're out and about.
Getting older shouldn’t mean getting lonely
There are opportunities across the city for people to get involved in local activities through Time to Shine.
Intergenerational projects are incredibly important as both young people and older people who can feel cut off and isolated from their community. It’s a great way of bringing two groups together and encouraging the groups to see the benefit of spending time with one another and the Leeds City Varieties Fashionable Lounge project shows how it works.
Using technology to make the lives of older people better
The Urban Sustainable Development Lab has been working with older people to develop digital solutions to some of the everyday problems they encounter.
If you would like to find out more about all of the fantastic Age Friendly projects happening take a look at the Age Friendly Annual Report (PDF 1.2MB).
If you would like to find other ways of working with older people or find out what other projects are happening in the city, visit www.opforum.org.uk.