The Case for Older People and Support Services

Enabling older people to experience creativity, inspiration and life enhancing activities is our core purpose. Read our case studies, watch our short films and be inspired. View our funding opportunities and link with experienced arts providers who are already delivering high quality provision across the country.


"I don’t believe that there is some different and darker territory called ‘old age’. For me, growing older has been about continuing the same journey, but with new and wonderful experiences, discoveries and perspectives. We are too often encouraged to think of older age as a negative experience, a siding and a retreat. It is time we replaced stereotypes and stories that show only decline and loss with more forward-looking accounts."
      A Tale of Two Counties, Age UK Oxfordshire, 2010

A 2006 study into the cognitive and mobility profile of older social dancers found that older social dancers had better balance and gait patterns than age and education-matched non dancers. The range of dance styles among the participant group included ballroom dancing, line dancing, swing dancing, and others. The study found that older social dancers had a more stable gait pattern than non-dancers. Older social dancers walked faster than non-dancers, and had longer steps and strides than older non-dancers. These factors contributed to a more stable gait and less vulnerability to falls, and the study therefore suggested that dance could be seen as a tool to improve balance and reduce the risk of falls in older people.
Verghese, 2006

We are already delivering creative approaches to supporting older people to achieve better health, wellbeing and quality of life and there are so many examples of best practice. But there are still so many ways that we can better engage older people in our work. The following examples provide some inspiration, but take a look at our policy and news section for the latest reports and headline data: