Northamptonshire's elderly day centres thrive again after being forced to close last year
“It means the world to me,” says David, 79. “I just love coming here.”
79-year-old David Branson speaks for many when he says he looks forward to seeing his friends at the Age UK Northamptonshire day centre every week.
“It means the world to me,” says David. “I just love coming here.”
Age UK Northamptonshire was forced to close all seven of its day centres in March 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic.
But as government rules have relaxed, and the country has been returning to normal, the charity has worked hard to re-open its day centres.
Now, four centres in Northamptonshire have returned to help the county's elderly people find companionship.
Northampton now has The William and Patricia Venton Centre on York Road and another at the St Giles Church Centre.
A day centre is open in Kettering at the Rockingham Road Baptist Church Rooms and another at Welton Village Hall near Daventry. There is also the weekly day session at the newly-built Tove Valley Centre in Towcester.
Age UK Northamptonshire is managing to provide over 180 day care places every week. Each five-hour session represents a lifeline to a lonely or vulnerable older person, many of whom live alone and may not have seen their friends for over a year.
Age UK Northamptonshire’s chief executive Chris Duff said: “It is such a welcome relief to announce that our largest day centre in Northamptonshire is heading towards capacity and we have found new venues where we can offer good-quality day care to older people in the county.
"Over the course of the day, Age UK Northamptonshire clients could be decorating gift boxes, playing giant dominoes and joining in a rousing singsong. If they prefer, they can sit and read the paper and just enjoy being in company. It is entirely up to them."
Older people, or members of their family, who are interested in day care are encouraged to contact Age UK Northamptonshire on 01604 611200 or visit their website at www.ageuknorthants.org.uk for more information.