Our origins lie in the Second World War when everyone was experiencing shortages and many older people found themselves destitute. A number of people in Norwich came together on 27th April 1945 to form the Norwich Older People's Welfare Committee.
Across the country this was being replicated and by 1950 there were 831 similar groups. In the 1960s, the NOPWC was active in pioneer work, developing new services and new local groups. It also ran an advisory service, produced a quarterly journal, held national conferences and ran training courses for the voluntary staff who were and still are the backbone of its work.
Some OPWCs began to develop their work of informing older people about their entitlements and helping them with Social Security claims, a key part of the work of nearly every Age Concern or Age UK today.
The name Age Concern was adopted in 1971 by national and local organisations alike to reflect a new emphasis, focusing public opinion on the wider needs and interests of older people instead of just the need to relieve poverty. By 2000 there were many hundreds of Age Concerns providing a range of services from luncheon clubs, information and advice to holidays.
In 2000, after a major review of how Age Concern was working, a new way was established of helping local Age Concern groups and Age Concern organisations to work together with Age Concern England, the national body, to maintain the same high standards of service for older people. ‘Age Concern, the federation’, was born.More recently, in 2009, Age Concern England and Help the Aged merged and formed what is now Age UK. The new charity invited Age Concerns to enter into a new partnership with it. Age Concern Norwich became one of the first local Age UK partners.