Get Active: Barking’s elderly step into healthier lifestyle

PUBLISHED: 13:00 07 October 2015

Sky TV's Hilary Kurt-Webster leads a line dancing class at the Park Centre on Rectory Road,

Sky TV's Hilary Kurt-Webster leads a line dancing class at the Park Centre on Rectory Road,


The borough’s elderly began dancing and fighting their way to fitness on Older People’s Day.

The national awareness-raiser, which came to Barking Town Square, on Thursday, saw older residents tackle Tai Chi, Zumba Gold and line dancing.

Sky TV star, Hilary Kurt-Webster, took a break from show Live! Laugh! Linedance! to help older people step into an active lifestyle, saying you’re never too old for your first dance.

And council leader Cllr Darren Rodwell joined residents for a Zumba Gold class.

“I was honoured to participate in the Older People’s Day event, and thoroughly enjoyed the Zumba Gold session, as well as chatting to residents and the many voluntary sector groups taking part,” he said. “We are very much aware of the vital role that older people have played in forming our communities, and the amazing amount of family, faith and voluntary work they do to hold us all together.

“There’s a lot of life and a lot of wisdom out there that is helping us to shape the future too.”

The day was the second in a week of free activities to encourage older people’s participation in sport, which also featured aqua aerobics, yoga and boccia.

And participants received vouchers for the Abbey Leisure Centre’s spa as a reward.

Cabinet member for adult social care, Cllr Maureen Worby, said the free activities were a well-deserved reward for older people’s service to the borough.

“We value our elders in Barking and Dagenham, and we’re showing that with this annual celebration, as well as continuing to offer an excellent ‘Ageing Well’ activity programme,” she said. “We’re also pointing the way to services and resources that people might need to help live a healthier, longer life.”

More information on the Ageing Well scheme is at

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