The Age of Creativity is a network of more than 1,000 professionals who all believe that creativity and culture supports older people to experience better health, wellbeing and quality of life.
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Blog

Welcome to our Blog page. Here you will find an inspiration of ideas and instances of good practise to help you to bring creativity into the lives of older people. We are always looking for new blogs which we also share on our social media. If you have an idea, a scheme, or anything you'd like to tell our membership about, then email as at hello@ageofcreativity.co.uk

Oxford Playhouse & Age UK Oxfordshire partner up to create Tea Talks during the lockdown

By: Beth Sedgwick

Description: Beth has developed a 30 minute chat session for older people who have limited access to technology this year. Find out how it works.

Date: 07/12/2020 Category: Theatre

TWD Radio

By: Pete Hill

Description: Pete Hill tells of how his love of radio inspired him to create a weekly show for people with dementia which reaches 850,000 listeners weekly.

Date: 04/12/2020 Category: Dementia

Musical Autobiographies - Repairing Self-Identity through Song

By: Nick J Jones

Description: Nick has spent the past few years experimenting with composing bespoke, tailor made songs, about the individual and their life. At the heart of his practice lies the question of whether person-centred musical autobiographies can offset the most damaging impact of dementia: the loss of identity.

Date: 03/11/2020 Category: Music

Introducing a New Initiative in the Ageing Sector

By: Isobel Murdoch

Description: Medley is a new initiative exploring music, art and nature's many impacts on health and wellbeing. Initially the focus is the website and blog https://medley.live, aiming to build awareness and to highlight different issues.

Date: 03/11/2020 Category: Combined

A Makeover for your Next Birthday (card)

By: Hannah McDowall (WIGS) & Dave Martin (CPA)

Description: After reading this Blog on birthday cards you'll think twice about buying those 'humorous' cards poking fun at getting older.

Date: 14/10/2020 Category: Combined

Digital Connections

By: Stephen Moore, Project Manager Gloucester Life Changes

Description: Age UK Gloucestershire has been busy building its repertoire of on-line activities recently...including a disco.

Date: 14/10/2020 Category: Age Uk

Imagination Arts moved its dance classes on line

By: Hannah Reynolds, Company Director, Imagination Arts

Description: Imagination Arts were able to move 4 out of its 6 Movement to Music classes for over 60s online, with the majority of its participants continuing to take part in the weekly classes. Find out how they did it.

Date: 25/08/2020 Category: Dance

Age UK Enfield - our creative response to Covid-19

By: By Alison Gordon - Service Manager Social Prescribing

Description: This is a fascinating to read how one branch of Age UK responded to the lockdown during the pandemic. To download the Home Exercise pack go to http://festival.ageofcreativity.co.uk/downloads/

Date: 18/06/2020 Category: Age Uk

Making the road

By: Penny Thewlis, CEO, Age UK Oxfordshire

Description: Penny reflects I on the question, since lockdown...how has the role of creativity changed in the Age sector?

Date: 21/05/2020 Category: Combined

Since Lockdown... how is the cultural sector adapting to deliver creativity for, with and by older people?

By: Flora Faith-Kelly

Description: Flora tells us how since lockdown, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance is finding new ways to engage with older adults across Lewisham previously involved in our Inspired not Tired programme via dance classes, singing and movement groups and various other creative projects.

Date: 21/05/2020 Category: Dance

Darkness and Light in Lockdown

By: Nicky Taylor

Description: Nicky Taylor of Leeds Playhouse reports on working remotely with people with dementia during lockdown Britain.

Date: 19/05/2020 Category: Theatre

Towards a live streaming creative ageing movement for older people

By: Elizabeth Brooke

Description: Elizabeth Brooke gives an Australian perspective

Date: 07/05/2020 Category: Digital

Theraputic Creativity at Nottingham Playhouse

By: Melissa May Smith

Description: Melissa explains the benefits of creative therapy courses she runs at Nottingham Playhouse

Date: 04/05/2020 Category: Theatre

Roundabout Dramatherapy

By: Susan Crockford

Description: Read how Roundabout offers professional, effective and creative dramatherapy sessions in care homes. It uses different creative media and techniques including: art images, collage work, music and movement, poetry, traditional folk tales, story creating and telling, reminiscence, puppets, props and costumes

Date: 03/03/2020 Category: Theatre

Music on Prescription

By: Chris Beck

Description: Meet Chris Beck who has been performing in care homes for the past 12 years. He strongly believes music and song is a powerful and tuneful tonic that can ease the feeling of isolation, initiate interaction, create fun and laughter and improve health and well-being.

Date: 27/02/2020 Category: Music

The Extraordinary Story of an Ordinary Life

By: Becky Edmunds

Description: Becky tells of an extraordinary find that has led to her developing 'toolkit' of ideas for creative sessions for groups exploring the stories and memories of older people. I hope to reconnect people with the value of journal writing as a regular practice which has proven benefits for health and wellbeing.

Date: 17/02/2020 Category: Combined

Age UK Gloucestershire?s Vibrant Ukulele Group Age UK Gloucestershire's Vibrant Ukulele Group

By: Stephen Moore

Description: Stephen Moore tells us about introducing a ukulele and the positive effects it has achieved.

Date: 10/12/2019 Category: Music

A Creative Group for Carers

By: Maggie Sanderson

Description: Maggie Sanderson tells how an innovative, creative group for Carers in Hereford has increased wellbeing and in those for whom they care

Date: 09/12/2019 Category: Care

When Old Age Is A Fun Age

By: Nakib Narat

Description: Nakib Narat's passion for the Chorlton Good Neighbour's Drama Workshops he leads is inspirational. Now in its 2nd year it has over 100 attendees and performed several times for the public.

Date: 02/10/2019 Category: Theatre

The Power of Music for People Living With Dementia and their Carers

By: Dr Warren Donnellan and others

Description: Dr Donnellan offers an insight into a new project which aims to design, deliver and evaluate an individual music listening intervention for older adults living with dementia and their carers.

Date: 26/09/2019 Category: Dementia

Music Matters

By: Bronte Heath

Description: In 2016 Landermeads Care Home worked with the University of Nottingham on their research project, 'Soundtrack to My Life'. The motive was to investigate the effect that music has on those living with a dementia in a care home setting. This is the story of how it integrated the findings into every day activities.

Date: 25/09/2019 Category: Health

Making Musical Bridges

By: Charlotte Miller

Description: Intergenerational Music Making (IMM), one of the UK's pioneers of intergenerational music projects, was born from Charlotte Miller's passion of working as a music therapist with the elderly and the very young in a variety of different settings.

Date: 18/09/2019 Category: Intergenerational

Music In Care Homes

By: Fiona Pritchard

Description: Read Fiona Pritchard's Blog on her role as Music and Arts Partner across 21 care homes in the south of England.

Date: 04/09/2019 Category: Care

Creating a comic about living with dementia with people with dementia

By: Sarah McNicol

Description: A group of nine people living with dementia, supported by dementia advocates from the Beth Johnson Foundation in Stoke-on-Trent, worked alongside artists in a series of arts workshops to find ways to represent and depict their experiences of the condition in a comic format.

Date: 02/09/2019 Category: Dementia

Exploring people with Dementia Experiences

By: Alison Ward

Description: Alison Ward's Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship meant a to visit Denmark to learn about the different ways that they work creatively with people with dementia. She spent time at a school for dementia where they have developed classes which are specifically aimed at supporting people with dementia, who attend the school as students. They participate in a range of different classes, including, cognitive training, music and art therapy plus physical exercise.

Date: 12/08/2019 Category: Combined

Storytelling is my super power what's yours?

By: Richard O'Neill

Description: Award-winning Richard enthuses about creating new empowering stories which have many benefits for our 21st century communities.

Date: 30/07/2019 Category: Theatre

Aspire Community Huddersfield

By: Susanna Shotter

Description: This is the inspiring story of one young woman with a career in Occupational Therapy and two young children, who experienced mental health issues and went on to launch the successful Aspire Creating Communities project in Huddersfield. The older people in her groups never quite know what to expect - it could be local artists, storytellers, musicians, historians, or inter-generational sessions with local schools and The Prince's Trust young adults, the one thing they know is that they'll have fun.

Date: 28/06/2019 Category: Combined

Bridging the gap

By: Zoe Dunbar

Description: Zoe Dunbar explores social isolation in the older Manchester Chinese community

Date: 10/06/2019 Category: Combined

'When I was little' - Memory Sharing at the Museum

By: Emma Riley

Description: 'When I was little' is a free activity for children aged three - seven to enjoy with their grandparents or older relatives at National Museums Liverpool museums and galleries. The activities are designed to allow children and older people to experience the museum together, explore museum objects and share stories and memories.

Date: 22/05/2019 Category: Intergenerational

Age of Creativity Festival Blog - Week 2

By: Farrell Curran

Description: It's week two and we've been blown away with the number of Festival events this year and the level of engagement we've had on social media. Not only have we connected with events from across the county, but I feel as though I've really got a flavour of the type of work so many of you are doing both in person and online.

Date: 20/05/2019 Category: Festival

Intergenerational Music Making

By: Charlotte Miller

Description: Intergenerational Music Making (IMM) was created to bring about positive social change for local communities and especially those suffering with Dementia. IMM brings together local schools, care homes, colleges and universities to create exciting and meaningful music therapy projects to improve well-being, mental health, tackle loneliness and help integrate local communities.

Date: 13/05/2019 Category: Intergenerational

Age Of Creativity Festival Blog

By: Farrell Curran

Description: As we move into the second week of the Age of Creativity Festival 2019, our Festival Manager reflects back on some of the highlights so far from week one.

Date: 09/05/2019 Category: Festival

Enhancing Health

By: Cindy Brooks

Description: Enhancing health, wellbeing and quality of life for all? Cindy Brooks reflects on the role of artistic practices in society

Date: 30/04/2019 Category: Combined

Still Stomping

By: Sian Stevenson

Description: Moving Memory Dance Theatre Company working with older dancers for some time. Here Sian Stevenson talks about its latest venture into Intergenerational projects.

Date: 30/04/2019 Category: Intergenerational

EngAge Rotherham: Connecting with Creativity

By: Age UK Rotherham

Description: Groups from EngAge Rotherham, part of Age UK, worked with AoC and 64 million artists to create our Age of Creativity May Daily Challenge. Ian Choke remains convinced of the importance of groups like this and the volunteers who lead them with love and creativity.

Date: 30/04/2019 Category: Visual Arts

Cubitt Artist Community Studios

By: Cubitt Artists

Description: Cubitt Artists run a community studios scheme in which artists are able to develop sensitive, responsive relationships with older people on a one-to-one basis. Plans often change as artists collaborate with participants, producing the unexpected.

Date: 23/04/2019 Category: Visual Arts

Mumuration Arts Inspiring Communities

By: Marian Duggan

Description: Marian delivers a thoughtful piece on how dance helps older people and the important factors that need to be considered.

Date: 06/02/2019 Category: Dance

The Cinema, Memory and Wellbeing Project

By: Lisa Shaw

Description: Lisa Shaw explains how Carmen Miranda fever sealed the success of the University of Liverpool's project.

Date: 04/02/2019 Category: Combined

Giving Audiences Remote Control

By: Natalie Walton

Description: Natalie Walton, Learning and Outreach Manager, Arts Council Collection, National Partners Programme, looks at ways of attracting the over 75s into our museums

Date: 13/12/2018 Category: Museums

Flourishing Creative Friendships

By: Emily Chilvers

Description: After almost 8 years teaching pottery to the 65+ Emily decided to put on her first collaborative exhibition of four of her regular groups to celebrate their work and the stories behind what they make

Date: 03/12/2018 Category: Visual Arts

More than Movement: Investigating dance for people with Parkinson's

By: Dr Jude Bek

Description: Dr Jude Bek, Research Associate in the School of Biological Sciences, University of Manchester details the beneficial effects of dance for people with Parkinson's, including reports of improvements in movement, mood and even thinking skills.

Date: 03/12/2018 Category: Dance

Creative Journeys

By: Andrew Ward

Description: Andrew Ward of Essex CC, explains how Creative Journeys, an innovative and exciting project exploring the role of arts and culture in care settings, supports and maintains relationships between older people, care staff and the wider community.

Date: 06/09/2018 Category: Combined

Magic Me

By: Deborah Mason

Description: Deborah Mason of Magic Me on the value of intergenerational work to older people and the community.

Date: 17/08/2018 Category: Combined

Make it Better

By: Ruth Purdy

Description: Make it better (mitber) use a person centred approach, responding to individual cultural interests, to enable people to feel more confident by engaging in chosen activities, new or familiar in different ways.

Date: 20/07/2018 Category: Visual Arts

Age is no barrier to the Digital Arts

By: Kate Duncan

Description: Age is no barrier to the Digital Arts says Kate Duncan of City Arts Nottingham.

Date: 12/07/2018 Category: General

Open Arms Collective

By: Angela Conlon

Description: Open Arms Artists' Collectivem in Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire, is committed to working creatively with older people.

Date: 12/07/2018 Category: General

Creative Minds

By: Chiswick Care Home

Description: Creative Minds enjoy making art with older people with learning difficulties at Chiswick Care Home

Date: 19/06/2018 Category: Visual Arts

Everyone has a Voice

By: Creative Minds

Description: Creative Minds Social Enterprise Community, our aims are to make art accessible to all and through the art give everyone a voice; a chance to express themselves

Date: 19/06/2018 Category: Visual Arts

Creative Age Challenge 2018

By: Kate Parkin

Description: A celebration of creativity in dementia and the community launches this month. Kate Parkin from creative ageing charity Equal Arts talks about how Creative Age Challenge is making difference to participants and cultural venues.

Date: 14/06/2018 Category: Combined

Observations in Nature

By: Ellie Robinson

Description: Observations in Nature is a photography and book-making project for people living with dementia

Date: 13/06/2018 Category: General

Creative Engagement in Housing & Care

By: Rachael Dinnage

Description: Rachael Dinnage tells her work at Central & Cecil Central & Cecil Housing Trust where there is a special focus on the benefits the arts can bring to later life.

Date: 13/06/2018 Category: Museums

Joie de Vivre

By: Lisa Lort & Emilie Barton

Description: Joie de Vivre - A celebration of dance for, by and with older people, a day at Pavillion Dance South West Bournemouth written by Lisa Lort & Emilie Barton

Date: 30/05/2018 Category: Dance

Live Age Festival

By: Isla Telford

Description: Isla Telford reflects on the 4th Live Age Festival at the New Vic Theatre and 1st October at Potteries Museum & Art Gallery

Date: 30/05/2018 Category: Theatre

Singing your way to better health

By: Udita Everett

Description: Sing for Better Health organises singing groups in the Brighton & Hove area. Here Udita Everett explains what the organisation does and the benefits it can bring.

Date: 27/03/2018 Category: Music

All the World A Stage

By: Living the Drama

Description: Living the Drama offers interesting insights from its experience of taking theatre into Care Homes.

Date: 12/09/2017 Category: Theatre

Ageing more Artfully

By: David Cutler

Description: David Cutler, Director of the Baring Foundation, gives an insight into how far this nation has come in creative ageing, siting successful examples from around the country. His conclusion is that we have come a long way but that we have unfinished business.

Date: 11/08/2017 Category: Combined

Ceramics Activities in Nightingale Hammerson's Clapham Home

By: Emily Hall

Description: Emily Hall is an experienced ceramicist. Here she tells of her experience of working with people with dementia in a care home setting.

Date: 30/03/2017 Category: Visual Arts

Flintlock Theatre's Four Score Years and Ten

By: Flintlock Theatre

Description: Read Flintlock Theatre's experience of creating verbatim theatre with older people at its heart.

Date: 22/03/2017 Category: Theatre

Art in Mind

By: Heather Thomas

Description: Heather Thomas, of Art in Mind, has been running art classes for people with dementia and their carers for many years. Here she tells of the joy and benefits it has brought.

Date: 14/03/2017 Category: Visual Arts

To Make is to Live

By: Paul Cann

Description: Paul Cann, a former Chief Executive of Age UK Oxfordshire, waxes lyrical about the need for social prescribing

Date: 14/03/2017 Category: General

Culture, Kopi and Kueh

By: Sharon Chen

Description: Museums in Singapore found it difficult to overcome barriers to attendance experienced by older people and their carers. Sharon Chen tells how they found inspiration from a talk given by Wendy Gallagher from the Whitworth Arts Gallery.

Date: 04/11/2016 Category: Museums

Cracking the Crinoline

By: Sian Stevenson

Description: Sian Stevenson, Director of Moving Memory Dance Theatre Company, has created a very successful dance company of older women which has performed from London to Paris. Here she reveals her and their motivation.

Date: 29/09/2016 Category: Dance

Creativity and Ageing in Japan

By: Jason Danley

Description: Jason Danley, of Brookes University, has spent time in Japan finding out how its long tradition of cultural and artistic appreciation underwrites the vigour in which its post-retirement population pursue their creative interests.

Date: 22/09/2016 Category: General

Stories for Wellbeing in Later Life

By: Fiona Hamilton

Description: Fiona Hamilton uses many techniques to get the creative juices flowing in her sessions. Here she reveals some that might inspire you.

Date: 19/09/2016 Category: Literature

Cornwall Museums Partnership

By: Chloe Hughes

Description: Chloe Hughes, of Cornwall Museums Partnership, explains how three museums worked collaboratively with artists, using their collections as inspiration to create opportunities for older people to be inspired.

Date: 12/09/2016 Category: Museums

The Appleby Tate, One Year on!

By: James Cropper

Description: James Cropper, founder of Arts and Minds, tells of the profound effect opening the Appleby Tate Art gallery at Appleby House Care Home has had.

Date: 10/08/2016 Category: Visual Arts

Fergus Early - Remembering to Dance

By: Fergus Early

Description: Fergus Early gives a brief history of Green Candle Dance Company and a few things he has observed and absorbed about working with people living with dementia.

Date: 07/07/2016 Category: Dance

Jacksons Lane - Working with Older People

By: Stuart Cox

Description: Stuart Cox, of Jackson's had no experience of running arts participation groups for older people so he started talking to them and found that 'fun' was the element they most needed.

Date: 03/06/2016 Category: Public Health

Everything Stops for Tea

By: Rebecca Seymour

Description: Tea and music sessions held in elderly care wards in a Salisbury Hospital have shown patients reporting physical, cognitive, social and emotional benefits and staff often stating feelings of wellbeing and uplift whilst working during these sessions. Rebecca Seymour, Elevate Co-ordinator, tells all.

Date: 12/05/2016 Category: Music