Com­ing to the res­cue

Since 1948 a Som­er­set char­ity has been striv­ing to im­prove life for older peo­ple, as KATE BAR­RING­TON ex­plains

Somerset Life - - ANTIQUES -

In the early 1970s the char­ity now known as Age UK Som­er­set got a re­quest to help trans­port Flossie, an older lady of over 80, her 18 pieces of lug­gage and a boxer dog (weigh­ing 4 stone), from Som­er­set to France to live with a rel­a­tive. It was agreed that £8 would be do­nated to­wards this en­deav­our. In 2016, the char­ity made a short film, still avail­able on its web­site, telling Jean’s story. Af­ter her hus­band passed away, Jean was feel­ing so low and lonely that she felt that life wasn’t worth liv­ing and had con­tem­plated sui­cide. The char­ity found her a be­friend­ing vol­un­teer, and her life was turned around. She now gets out and about, has met new peo­ple and her vol­un­teer vis­i­tor gave her friend­ship and the en­cour­age­ment she needed to get her­self a dog, Sir Digby, the star of the film! Flossie and Jean may be sep­a­rated by decades, but they share one thing in com­mon. When they were strug­gling

Age UK Som­er­set came to their res­cue.

It was back in 1948 that the Som­er­set Older Peo­ple’s Wel­fare Com­mit­tee met for the first time. This was a group of or­gan­i­sa­tions shar­ing the same aim - to im­prove life for older peo­ple in Som­er­set. Since then there have been sev­eral name changes - to Age Con­cern Som­er­set in 1971, to Age UK Som­er­set in 2010 - but in 70 years the aim re­mains the same.

Age UK Som­er­set is an in­de­pen­dent lo­cal char­ity (not to be con­fused with Age UK,

Giv­ing help and ad­vice is an im­por­tant part of the char­ity’s work

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