Celebrities get festive at Age UK's carol concert
Published on 19 December 2014 10:30 AM
Celebrities get festive at Age UK's carol concert at St Paul's Cathedral
Joanna Lumley, Penny Smith and Susanna Reid help raise vital funds
Age UK's star-studded ‘Love Christmas' carol concert, held at St Paul's Cathedral on Thursday 18 December 2014, has raised over £130,000 to help the Charity tackle loneliness through its vital national and local services.
The festive fundraiser was hosted by TV's Penny Smith, with seasonal readings from much-loved actresses Joanna Lumley, Barbara Windsor, writer and presenter Victoria Coren Mitchell and Good Morning Britain's Susanna Reid. There was also a special performance from the UK's best-selling classical artist Russell Watson and appearances by the world-renowned St Paul's Cathedral Consort and the London Gay Men's Chorus, Europe's largest and best known gay choir.
All proceeds from Age UK's Love Christmas carol concert will help the Charity to fight loneliness through its vital national and local services. Loneliness is a daily reality for over one million older people who regularly go an entire month without speaking to anyone[i].
Joanna Lumley said: 'We've had a truly magical evening at St Paul's Cathedral and it's certainly got me in the festive mood! It's been made all the more special knowing we were there to support Age UK to help tackle the growing issue of loneliness in later life. It's heartbreaking to know there are thousands of older people who have no-one to turn to for advice and companionship, or even someone to ask simply how their day is, which can make such a difference. The money raised this evening will help Age UK provide crucial services and activities to those who are lonely, so it was great to see so many people show their support.'
Barbara Windsor said: 'Feeling lonely is horrible at any time of year, but it can be particularly tough over the festive period when many are celebrating in the company of family and friends. That's why Age UK's work to support older people who are lonely is so important. We can all play our part this winter by popping in to see an older relative or neighbour or by putting them in contact with their local Age UK.'
Lydia Curran, Head of Events at Age UK, said: 'We're delighted to have received so much support at our Love Christmas carol concert. It was a fantastic occasion to get us in the Christmas mood, but most importantly the funds raised will make a crucial difference to the lives of older people who are lonely. We're extremely grateful to all our sponsors and everyone who attended the event to support and help us continue our vital work.'
Age UK helps to prevent and reduce loneliness by supporting a range of services and activities such as a friendly telephone call, weekly visits, social activities such as lunch clubs exercise classes and tea-dances, advice when there's nowhere to turn, and the chance to get out and about in the local community, all of which play a crucial part in helping make later life better. Regular contact from local Age UK services can be life-changing and give older people the confidence they need to feel more connected and less isolated.
To support Age UK's vital work people can donate by calling 0800 169 8787, text LOVE to 70004 to give £5[ii] or visit www.ageuk.org.uk/get-involved/loneliness.
Older people and their families can get in touch with Age UK to find out how the Charity could help someone who may be feeling lonely by calling Age UK Advice for free on 0800 169 65 65.
For more information about Age UK fundraising events and to find out how you can show your support visit www.ageuk.org.uk/events.
Love Christmas was sponsored by E.ON, Dignity, Rothesay Life, Williams Lea, Lucrum Group and Just Retirement Solutions.
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Notes to editors
For more information and images, please contact Marilena Luxmoore, Media Officer at Age UK, on 0203 0331204 or email Marilena.Luxmoore@ageuk.org.uk
We work with our national partners, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI and our local Age UK partners in England (together the Age UK Family). We also work internationally for people in later life as a member of the DEC and with our sister charity Help Age International.
Age UK believes that everyone should have the opportunity to make the most of later life, whatever their circumstances. We provide free information, advice and support to over six million people; commercial products and services to over one million customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in later life. Our work focuses on five key areas: money matters, health and wellbeing, home and care, work and training and leisure and lifestyle.
Age UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee and registered in England (registered charity number 1128267 and company number 6825798). Age Concern England and Help the Aged (both registered charities), and their trading and other associated companies merged on the 1st April 2009. Together they have formed the Age UK Group ("we"). Charitable services are offered through Age UK and commercial products are offered by the Charity's trading companies, which donate their net profits to Age UK (the Charity).
E.ON is one of the UK's leading power and gas companies - generating electricity, retailing power and gas, developing gas storage and undertaking gas and oil exploration and production. It employs around 10,500 people in the UK and more than 62,000 worldwide.
E.ON has been voted Britain's best large energy supplier for the third year running in the uSwitch.com Customer Satisfaction Awards. The independent report and awards are published annually and are based on a YouGov poll of over 5,000 energy customers.
Over 780,000 E.ON customers have so far used its 'Saving Energy Toolkit' online tool, which provides detailed information about where and when energy is being used in the home, including how customers' energy use compares to others in their area. For more information, visit eonenergy.com.
Dignity is a British company that has funeral homes and crematoria throughout the UK and strives to set the highest standards for the funeral profession in terms of client service and care for the deceased. Dignity is also on of the UK's leading providers of pre-paid funeral plans, where people can plan and pay for their funeral in advance. Dignity is a FTSE 250 company listed on the London Stock Exchange and its funeral directors and arrangers come from the communities they serve or families that have been in the profession for generations.
About Rothesay Life
Rothesay Life was established in 2007 and has become one of the leading providers of regulated insurance solutions in the UK market for pensions de-risking, with over £15 billion of insurance contracts. In 2013, Rothesay Life wrote £1.6 billion of bulk annuity premiums following the £1.3 billion written in 2012. This strong growth has been achieved through the steady accumulation of pension scheme clients. Existing Rothesay Life clients include the pension schemes and members associated with such names as RSA, British Airways, Rank, Uniq, General Motors, the MNOPF (Merchant Navy Officers Pension Fund), InterContinental Hotels, Philips and GKN.
Rothesay Life is a secure long-term provider of pensions, focused on
• a flexible and committed approach to execution;
• ongoing risk management to maintain balance sheet strength; and
• robust operational processes.
Rothesay Life is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. www.rothesaylife.co.uk
About Williams Lea
Williams Lea is a leading global BPO organisation. We specialise in Corporate Information Solutions that re-engineer end-to-end business processes. Blending the right balance of people, process, delivery and technology, we will help you to engage more effectively with internal and external audiences to drive your brand differentiation and establish your competitive edge.
About Just Retirement
• Just Retirement (Holdings) Limited was founded in 2004 and in November 2013, following a successful initial public offering, Just Retirement Group plc was admitted to the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
• The Group provides products to those at or in-retirement, these include individually underwritten annuities, care annuities, lifetime mortgages and defined benefit de-risking solutions.
• The Age UK Annuity Service and the Age UK Equity Release Advice Service are provided by Just Retirement Solutions Limited. Through the Age UK Equity Release Advice Service customers have access to an equity release plan with exclusive features, provided by Just Retirement Limited.
• Just Retirement Solutions Limited is one of the UK's leading equity release advice specialists and has made over £485million available to more than 20,000 customers since the company launched in 2006.
• Since the launch of the Just Retirement Solutions Limited's Annuity Service in 2008, the service has helped over 7,000 customers invest over £172million in annuity premiums.
About Lucrum Group
Lucrum Group is an investor in people. It was founded with the vision to empower aspiring entrepreneurs to achieve their dreams and ambitions. The company's vision is to create business and career opportunities for the youth, women and unemployed who are passionate to learn, grow and contribute positively to the success of our country.It provides a ready to use scalable platform to commercialise ideas and drive rapid business growth through a package of services including access to capital, strategy development, marketing, technical and operational systems and expertise.
It strives to offer a flexible and enjoyable work environment that fosters creativity, innovation and accountability.
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[i] Loneliness, Social Isolation and Living Alone in Later Life, C. Victor et al., 2003, and Mid-2012 population estimates for the UK, Office for National Statistics, 2013
[ii] Text Costs £5.00 plus network charge. Age UK receives 100% of your donation. Obtain bill payers permission.