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UK Older People’s Day was marked in style as the borough celebrated with a week-long programme of events, including everything from a 1950s exhibition to a flower arranging workshop.

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Groups including Redbridge Council, Vision Redbridge, charity Age UK Redbridge and the Redbridge Pensioners’ Forum helped to organise a number of events to mark the official day on Thursday.

Highlight

One of the highlights this year was the free fashion show at Redbridge Central Library, in Clements Road, Ilford, which showcased traditional outfits from across the globe, made and modelled by older people on Friday.

John Coombes, chairman of the pensioners’ forum, said: “The fashion show has got to be the highlight for me and it was the best one we’ve ever had.

“People are usually shocked and surprised by this event and it is important that people realise that older people are fashion conscious too.

“There was all different types of fashion inspired by everything from traditional African to Indian dress.”

Among the other events taking place, was a health and wellbeing fair at Valentines Mansion, Emerson Road, Ilford, on Wednesday of last week which attracted almost 170 people who came try a number of taster exercise classes including zumba and tai-chi.

The idea behind the events was to promote healthy and active lifestyles for older people and live music was also provided by Alan Ferner in the morning and by the Redbridge Music Lounge in the afternoon.

A Redbridge Council spokesman said: “The enthusiastic participation in exercise taster classes – when it comes to hula-hooping, the older generation puts youngsters to shame.”

Visitors could also get free blood pressure checks, screening and advice from the Stroke Association and body MOTs.

Positive

Mr Coombes added: “We hope this year’s events helps people to realise older people do exist and are an important part of society and remove the negative image of age.

“Next year I hope the council gets more involved in the events and helps out volunteers to make Older People’s Day an even bigger success.”

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