More than 120 older people and schoolchildren came together last week at our second annual inter-generational tea party.
‘Now You See Me’ took place at Shrewsbury School on 6 April and was organised by the Shrewsbury Supporters Group for Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin.
Every year the event aims to encourage older and younger people to pull up a chair, chat, laugh and even dance together in a bid not only to combat loneliness among the elderly, but to break down barriers that exist between the generations, barriers often spanning 80 years.
Around 60 children from St George’s and Mereside Primary Schools, as well as 60 older people from the Shrewsbury area did all this while also enjoying copious amounts of tea, squash and delicious cakes.
To help break the ice there was a quiz, which needed the knowledge of both young and old to find the answers. Guests took part in cake-decorating activities provided by Katie’s Kids Kitchen and created artwork with Heyday, along with writing out a label that asked each person to tell the others something interesting about themselves. A reminiscence table intrigued the schoolchildren with objects from yesteryear while everyone was entertained by music, singing and Zumba dancing demonstrations.
Heather Osborne, Chief Executive of Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin, said, ‘This was a truly fantastic event which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. There was such a lovely atmosphere and it was brilliant to see the schoolchildren chatting to older people and getting to know them. The smiles on peoples’ faces was a joy to see; this is something that the town should be immensely proud of.’
Kate Taylor, who organised the event, said, ‘We would like to thank everyone who supported Now You See Me. While it wasn’t a fundraiser, it was an event that raised awareness, awareness of life and the amazing individual people that are often unseen, albeit right next door. I heard a boy talking to an older man about being a telegram boy, and another lady explaining to two girls how she was a midwife during the war and some of the things she had to do. It was just brilliant, and there is no reason that this event couldn’t be replicated in every town in the UK… hopefully others will follow Shrewsbury’s lead.’