COLUMN: Focus on keeping elderly safe and well in their own homes

With a growing elderly population in our county, the county council is focusing on how to keep them safe, well and independent in their own homes – writes Coun Wendy Bowkett.
Coun Wendy BowkettCoun Wendy Bowkett
Coun Wendy Bowkett

Lincolnshire’s Director of Public Health annual report for 2023, which has just been published, brings this into sharp focus. Entitled ‘Adding Life to Years’, it looks at the importance of addressing the needs of the growing older population in Lincolnshire, particularly in rural and coastal areas.

Produced by our Director of Public Health, Professor Derek Ward, the report uses the World Health Organisation (WHO) Age Friendly Framework to identify the local picture through eight themes which can influence the health and wellbeing of the older population. For example, social contact, communication, housing, health, and transport.

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Each chapter describes the current picture for each theme and how we are addressing some of the health and social issues faced by our older population. We also identify what more can be done to help older people to access services, maintain social contact, and remain healthy. By identifying these needs, we can take steps to help this group to live healthier for longer therefore adding life to years.

In terms of social contact, there are many activity groups organised in local communities in Lincolnshire which help to keep body and mind active and can lead to an improvement in health and wellbeing – a good source of information for activities, as well as advice on things like support for digital and technology, is Connect to Support –

The housing theme highlights the seven extra care schemes in the county providing 339 units of accommodation for older people. We will be looking to extend these and other supported housing to give people a range of accommodation opportunities. For more information about supported living visit

While for transport we need to build on initiatives like our Call Connect, a bookable, on-demand bus service which we have been running since 2001. With 34 services countywide, it plugs gaps in bus service provision that conventional bus services struggle to meet, particularly in deep rural areas. For more details see visit

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Derek’s report will improve the awareness of issues that affect our older population and help us to capitalise on the infrastructure and services we already have in the county which support them.

It’s important we explore opportunities to further promote the benefits of our services to support healthy ageing. We will also be using this valuable outlook as the basis for a future Lincolnshire State of Ageing Report.

Take a look at the report at