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Older people's forumThose of us over 55 make up a fifth of the UK population. But do we in later life have a big enough say in the decisions that affect our lives? Make your voice heard by joining an independent local forum.

Age UK has contact with more than 250 local older people’s forums in England. Through being a member of an independent forum, people in later life are making their voices heard on the issues that matter to them, influencing the planning and provision of services locally, regionally and nationally.

About local forums

Local forums vary in size - from small groups to those with thousands of members, but they all have a number of features in common: they are all independent organisations that give people in later life a collective voice, influencing decision-makers on matters that impact on everyday life.

The forums are democratic and inclusive; they are run independently by older people, for older people. All members are volunteers.

In the local forums, people in later life decide their own agenda, share information and raise issues of concern. As well as campaigning, they often have social activities, run trips and hold open meetings: socialising, meeting new people and keeping in touch with local news.

Support for local forums

'Are you listening?' booklet on engaging older people

This booklet has been produced to share good practice on the effective engagement of older people. Stemming from our work with older people’s forums over many years, it demonstrates the value of forums and a wide range of other engagement initiatives.

Download the 'Are you listening?' booklet (PDF 5 MB)

Forum websites

Many of the local forums have their own websites to share information with others. To find out more, please visit the links below:

Further information

For more information: Call Age UK Advice: 0800 169 2081