Committed To Becoming More Age-Friendly
Newcastle upon Tyne United Kingdom
Newcastle – a city adapting to demographic change
Newcastle upon Tyne is focussing on adapting the city’s infrastructure and services to demographic change. We have incorporated ‘becoming an age friendly city’ as a cross-cutting theme in the Wellbeing for Life Strategy (our statutory health and wellbeing strategy) and it also has prominence in the Council plan. There is strong political support for this approach and Newcastle City Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Housing has the thematic lead for ‘age-friendly city’.
A multi-agency group which brings together local partners in academic, public, private and voluntary sectors with expertise in ageing issues acts as a key network and resource for driving forward the work in Newcastle. Older citizens are championing, supporting and co-producing local developments. The long-established Elders Council is a significant partner, with other community groups also contributing to many developments.
The city has much to be proud of in terms of its work to date. We are now making a step change by ensuring that adapting to demographic change is embedded across the policies and practices of the Council. A key example of this is the Older People’s Housing Delivery Plan, which is delivering 750 units of specialist housing during 2013-18. Our thinking about housing is constantly evolving. Newcastle University is also leading on the Future Homes project which aims to develop demonstrator houses which facilitate multi-general living, and incorporate integrated technologies and high energy efficiency into design.
Partners in the city are also focusing on a range of initiatives related to age diverse workforce. These initiatives are aimed at supporting businesses to better manage the age diverse workforce and at addressing the need for improved information, advice and guidance and skills development opportunities for older workers and jobseekers.
Work in Newcastle upon Tyne ranges from modest, practical changes such as the Dementia Friendly Cinema programme through to major future facing innovation. The National Innovation Centre for Ageing is now established in Newcastle upon Tyne, providing new and exciting opportunities for partners in the city to drive innovation.