A spokesperson from Age UK Mid Hampshire said: “We are very sad to announce the closure of Age UK Mid Hampshire after many years of service to the local community. Financial pressures and rising costs have made it increasingly difficult to bridge the funding gap. We closed our doors for the final time on 31st May. We are however pleased and relieved to be able to announce that a future has been secured for the majority of our Winchester Lunch Clubs which were under threat, and our Foot Clinic and Enablement Services in Andover. The Lunch Clubs on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday will continue to run with the support of St Barnabas Church in Weeke and Winchester Baptist Church. The clubs will be known as Winchester Well Being. Our Andover services are being taken on by Age Concern Hampshire, who have also taken on some of our Information and Advice Volunteers to join their own team in Winchester. We are immensely grateful to the Winchester Churches and to Age Concern Hampshire for their support and cooperation, and their consideration for the needs of older people across Mid Hampshire. Sadly our Help at Home service has had to close, and our clients and their helpers have been informed. We would like to thank everyone who has provided and supported this service, which has provided so much practical help to so many people.
Background Q&As for info :
Q. What will happen to people who have taken out contracts for products they have bought i.e. insurance etc?
A. Customers of Age UK Enterprises products in the Mid Hampshire area can be assured that their products remain fully in place. If existing customers have any questions or concerns about Age UK products or services they have purchased they should contact the customer helpline number provided in their policy or product documents. Prospective customers of Age UK Enterprise products in the Hampshire areas will still be able to access these products by telephone or online or, alternatively, they can visit other local Age UK offices for guidance.
Q. Why is the local Age UK closing?
A. It is increasingly difficult for many small charities to keep fundraising and maintain high quality services. In the end trustees may well judge that the interests of their beneficiaries are best served by transferring services including staff and volunteers to other charities.
Q. Why has the organisation been losing money?
A. Some of our services needed a substantial subsidy to supplement the fees we were receiving. In the end the amount of income we could generate through fundraising was not enough to cover the subsidy and the central costs of running the organisation.
Q. What help has Age UK, that national charity, given?
A. Age UK, the national charity, has been very supportive financially and with advice and guidance to help us manage the transfer and closure.
Q. This will impact on many local older people in the area – are there any other Age UK services in the area?
A. Yes there are Age UK’s in Portsmouth, Southampton, and the Isle of Wight.
Q. How many staff have been made redundant as a result?
A. We have had to make 3 staff redundant. Fortunately, we were able to transfer most of our staff to Winchester Churches and Age Concern Hampshire.