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The magazine for pre and post retirement

May/June £2.90


today DON'T WORRY BE HAPPY develop a healthy mindstyle

Competitions see p15

Plus: The New Season - mouth-watering recipes

• Retirement Hot Spot - we look at Turkey

• Activity And Exercise - fitter and better

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E M I T T X E N T F I G A E V I G E H T WITH HHH’ H H H ‘AH . R O FACTHORSE OR DONKEY. A charity registered in Scotland No SC 037536 and in England and Wales No 290356





NELLIE or friend? opting one of a loved one ctuary. By ad e to receive the present for an S al al su u im n n u sA an tinu om Mountain ng to think of donkeys con or donkey fr ur head tryi horses and r yo se g ou or in h at a ch th at of re cr S tion y e su e desperatel a gift of adop elping to mak d donkeys. W Why not give you will be h an s s re ie n tu po ea cr s, ful rve. horse these beauti at they dese for over 100 d attention th rescue centre we care an ve lo , re ca uine s largest eq As Scotland’ nds. fu e is ra to . elp need your h YS, 2 PM. TO 4.30 PM WE ARE OPEN 7 DA w. belo ber on the num A90 To adopt a horse or donkey call us SITUATED CLOSE TO re future to look forward to. secu a ) SIGNPOSTED them give EN can DE help ER your AB With TO ADOPT call us no or to donate text: w on FREEPHONE 0300 999 999 3 PONY33 followed by the amount in £’s to 70070

Mountains Animal Sanctuary, Milton of Ogil, Glen Ogil, Forfar DD8 3SQ. TO FIND OUT MORE CALL US: 0135 6 650258. YOU CAN ALSO DONATE AT: mountai SEE OUR FACEBOOK PAGE.



CONTENTS 4 Develop a Healthy Mindstyle Your state of mind has a remarkable effect on how you feel as you age, and also on ageing itself. Read how to have a positive engagement with life and be happy


6 Back to Basics


Test your knowledge with our fun quiz and see how much you can remember.

6 A Street Cat Named Bob – Book review ©Monkey

Business - Fotolia

8 Now is the Season Mouth-watering recipes that celebrate seasonal produce from the garden, orchard or farmer’s market.

10 Retiring to Turkey Turkey’s value-for-money has drawn British holidaymakers in their thousands. Now, worried about making ends meet in the UK, Chris Baker writes about the increasing numbers of pensioners making that holiday permanent.


12 Out and About Read about events taking place nationally.


• Published by: Amra Media Solutions Ltd The Old Lavender Mill 46a Brook Street Aston Clinton Buckinghamshire HP22 5ES • Tel: 01296 632700 • Fax: 01296 632720 • Email: • • Designed by: Tom Evans Design All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the prior permission of the publisher. The opinions expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publisher. Although every care is taken to ensure the accuracy of the information and the advertisements contained within the magazine, the publishers cannot accept any liability. Retirement Today would be pleased to receive your articles and photographs for possible publication. Although all reasonable care will be taken the magazine can assume no responsibility and contributors are advised to retain a copy.

15 Competitions

Your chance to win theatre tickets to see The Sunshine Boys, tickets for an outdoor concert at Kew Gardens, exhibition tickets for BBC Gardeners World Live, London’s Art and Antiques Fair, plus James Patterson’s latest book.

16 Activity and Exercise


When you’re really tired, even routine tasks like having a shower or washing up become an effort. Read about how the fitter you are, the better you can resist the invidious onslaught of tiredness.

21 Update New time-saving parking service launched at Glasgow Airport; Retired nation is sitting on £96.41 billion of personal debts; Osborne missing opportunity to save Britain £30bn; Don’t spend what you don’t have” is the top money saving in UK; Best New Product.


22 Perfect Stay Read about our visit to The Park Plaza Sherlock Holmes Hotel in London which made a lasting impression and worthy of a special mention to readers.

25 A Forever Gift It’s not just the rich and wealthy that leave money to charity when they die. Read about how a legacy is one of the ways of making sure you make a difference beyond your lifetime.


26 Charity News Read what’s happening within the world of charity.


29 Subscription Subscribe and have Retirement Today delivered direct to your door.

30 Grey Hairs The regular pensions column. The fourth and final article in the ‘Annuity Awareness Campaign’ RETIREMENT



Develop a Healthy Mindstyle Y our state of mind has a remarkable effect on how you feel as you age, and also on ageing itself. The worst attitude you can have is that of cynicism, while the best is a positive engagement in life. An extraordinary illustration of the power of the mind was a study by Professor Ellen Langer who took a group of men aged 75-80 years old on a country retreat. Half were asked to think about the past.The other half were invited to stay in a house that had all the artefacts from the year 1959. They listened to music, watched films and ate food from that era. Within five days, several of their signs of ageing had improved, including more joint flexibility, better vision, better breathing and better cognitive function.* This shows how your state of mind has a direct effect on your body and the physiological markers that we associate with ageing.

Develop a Healthy Mindstyle

Don’t worry, be happy


Happiness comes from knowing you are on track in life. Being positively engaged, and successful, in activities that you believe in, makes all the difference. An example of this is the fact Academy Award winners live 3.9 years longer, and Nobel Prize winners live two years longer than other nominees.** There have also been other studies looking at whether an optimistic outlook has any affect on life span; in one, those with a high level of optimism had a 23 per cent lower risk of cardiovascular death***, and another found that the risk of dying in the next two years was halved in those with a positive attitude.† Yet another study on Catholic nuns found that the happiest nuns lived an extra 9.5 years.†† Being conscientious, purposeful and working hard might also extend your life. The most extensive study of the effects of one’s psychological profile on ageing is that of the Longevity Project, begun by Dr Lewis Terman in the 1920s and now written up in the book called The Longevity Project by Howard Friedman and Leslie Martin. Terman slected 1500 bright boys and girls, all born around 1920 and his researchers studied their lives in meticulous detail at ten year intervals right up to the children’s deaths. The main findings were that conscientious, purposeful and hard-working people lived longer. They found that the quality of being conscientious was fairly hardwired – it didn’t change from youth to old age – and that conscientious people were generally prudent, persistent, responsible, not overly impulsive and honest. They lived longer. Contrary to the view that stress is always a bad thing, they found that the longest-living people often worked hard, often not retiring. They were purposeful and generally liked their jobs even if they were hard work and stressful. They also possessed the quality of resilience and found meaning even in the face of difficult circumstances. Doing something you love was also a key attribute of those living the longest. Another attribute was having a high level of social connectedness, with stable relationships, frequent contact and interactions that care for others. The emotions associated with a longer, healthier life are positivity, optimism, resilience, self-esteem, happiness, RETIREMENT


Cynicism is bad for you

life satisfaction, love, friendship and hope (Interestingly, though, in the Longevity Project they found that those individuals who were too optimistic, perhaps not truly experiencing and learning from the difficult times in life, didn’t live longer.) If you don’t currently enjoy the positive feelings listed above, there are a number of ways that you can make yourself more open to them.

Be more flexible

There is a tendency in life to become less flexible, both physical in the body and in the mind as the years go by. As people age they tend to become set in their ways and less able to deal with new circumstances. For this very reason it is important to learn new things, to travel, and to be open to new experiences. Catch yourself whenever you hear the words ‘I can’t or ‘I don’t know how to’ coming out of your mouth – remember that it is never too late to learn or to change.

As we said at the beginning, the worst emotion for longevity is not depression or stress – it’s cynicism. A cynic is more likely not to engage emotionally in activities, and through questioning everything, closes down opportunities to have new experiences and to try things out. Cynicism raises ‘inflammatory markers’ in the body and the more cynical a person is the more those markers are raised. A study showed that being stressed was worse than being depressed, but the worst of all was being cynical. ††† Cynicism is a state of insecurity masquerading as sophistication. Everyone and everything else is fraudulent and fake. It comes in many forms, from jeering at big-hearted emotions and displays of affection to rejecting anything new until it has been proven by science. A scientific demand for evidence is admirable but anyone practising preventative non-drug therapies is all too familiar with how that demand can become a cynical witch-hunt when applied in ways that don’t increase knowledge or benefit patients. The trouble with this kind of thinking is that it shuts off the possibility of new experiences and creative expression, blocking you from trying something different and taking risks. It is a negative outlook that springs from a lack of trust in life, making it hard to find meaning or joy anywhere. Even gloomy predictions are often self-fulfilling. And that, according to the science, is bad for you.

The emotions associated with a longer, healthier life are positivity, optimism, resilience, self-esteem, happiness, life satisfaction, love, friendship and hope

Transforming stress into resilience

A large part of stress is self-induced by perceiving a change of circumstances in a negative way – by resisting the opportunities that life presents us with, rather than embracing them. Scientists at the HeartMath Institute have developed a measure of how people handle stress, known as ‘heart rate variability’. A monitor called an Emwave has a small screen that allows you to see if your response is effective and coherent or erratic and unfocused. The trick is to bring your breathing into sync with your heart rate. Because you can see your response changing on the screen, you can quickly learn to produce the coherent state that fits very well with the psychological attributes of long-lived people. It is the same state that mediators achieve after years of

EXERCISE: heart focus, breathing and feeling 1. heart focus

Focus your attention on your heart area – the space behind your breastbone in the centre of your chest between your nipples (your hear in more in the centre than on the left).

2. heart breathing

Now imagine your breath flowing in and out of your heart area. This helps your respiration and heart rhythm to synchronise. So focus in this area and aim to breathe evenly; for example inhale for five or six seconds and exhale for five or six seconds (choose a timescale that feels comfortable and flows easily). Take a few minutes to get hang of the heart focus and heart breathing stages, then introduce step three:

situation. Just a few Heart Math breaths can help you to stay calm and coherent instead of becoming stressed. And you can do it with your eyes open, as you walk or talk – so you have a tool to control stress at the direct point you encounter a situation likely to trigger a negative reaction n * E.Langer, Mindfulness, Addison Welsey, 1989 ** M.D. Rablen, A J Oswald, ‘Mortality and immortality:The Nobel Prize as an experiment into the effects of status upon longevity’, Journal of Health Economics, 2008;27(6):1462-71. *** E.J. Giltay, et al., ‘Dispositional optimism and all-cause and cardiovascular mortality in a prospective cohort of elderly Dutch men and women’, Archives of General Psychiatry, 2004;61:1126-35. † G.V. Ostir, et al. ‘Emotional well-being predicts subsequent functional independence and survival’, Journal of American Geriatric Society, 2000;48(5):473-8 †† C.Tregear et al. ‘Positive emotions and attitudes: precious keys to longevity’, Journal of European Anti-Ageing Medicine, Issue 4, Oct 2006;31-2. ††† N. Ranjit, et al,‘Psychosocial factors and inflammation in the multi-ethnic study of atherosclerosis’ Archives of Internal Medicine, 2007;167:174-81

3. heart feeling

These three steps, when practised daily for five minutes, can help you to de-stress, feel calmer and more content. Your heart rhythms will become coherent and your heartbrain communication will optimise to help you think more clearly. For your daily HeartMatch practice, it’s a good idea to find a regular time when you can sit down quietly and undisturbed (such as first thing n the morning, during your lunch break or when you get home from work). This way it’s more likely to become a habit and you can give the exercise your full attention. Once you’ve got the hang of HeartMath, you can then use it any time you encounter a stressful event; for example, if you start to feel tense in heavy traffic, or you become overloaded at work or sense you are about to fact a difficult emotional

Develop a Healthy Mindstyle

practice, where you are able to fully participate in life, be present and be open to new experiences. The researchers found that activities, feelings or exercises that were more heart-centred were the most effective at turning off harmful stress hormones. The HeartMath Institute runs workshops around the world to help people learn how to transform stressful reactions reactions into resilience. In the UK we sponsor one every year. These teach people simple techniques to switch off stressful, negative reactions and to settle into a positive mind-frame. You can also consult a practitioner on a one-to-one basis. Here are three simple ‘quick chohernce’ techniques from HeartMath that you can learn and can then apply whenever you are feeling stressed

As you breathe in and out of your heart area, recall a positive emotion and try to re-experience it. This could be remembering a time spent with someone you love, walking in your favourite spot, stroking a pet, picturing a tree or scenic location you admire or even just feeling appreciation that you ate today or have shoes on your feet. If your mind wanders, just bring it gently back to the positive experience.

The 10 Secrets of Healthy Ageing by Patrick Holford and Jerome Burne is published by Piatkus at £14.99. To order a copy at £12.99 including free postage and packing, please call 01832 737525 quoting ref PIA 172.




Back to Basics

‘Do you know the difference between climate and weather? Or latitude and longitude? Can you book a hotel room in French or solve long multiplication? But don’t worry if not, Back to Basics: The Education You Wish You’d Had is here to fill in the gaps. Written by bestselling author Caroline Taggart, this book is great for helping you brush up on the basics of pretty much everything.’



General Knowledge

4. In a fraction, the number below the line is known as what? a) The numerator b) The denominator c) The multiplier

10. When was the Battle of Bosworth? a) 1 408 b) 1467 c) 1485

16. In music, what does the term ‘forte’ mean? a) Quickly b) Loud c) Fast

11. In 1649, Oliver Cromwell became Lord Protector of the new Commonwealth after the death of which king? a) Charles I b) Charles II c) James II

17. In classical myth, who marries their mother and kills their father? a) Oedipus b) Hercules c) Midas

5. All three angles of a triangle should add up to what? a) 360 degrees b) 90 degrees c) 180 degrees

English Language

Back to Basics

1. ‘A quotation at the beginning of a book or chapter, suggesting its theme’ describes which of the following ? a) An epigram b) An epitaph c) An epigraph 2. What is an oxymoron? a) Exaggeration for effect b) The juxtaposition for effect of two apparently contradictory words c) A number of words that begin with the same sound 3. How many lines are in a sonnet? a) 12 b) 14 c) 16

6. What is a prime number? a) A number which is only divisible by itself and 1 b) A whole number (ie. no decimals) c) A number which divides by 10

12. When did Britain abolish its slave trade? a) 1807 b) 1824 c) 1871



7. Resistance, which impedes the flow of electricity, is measured in what? a) Watts b) Ohms c) Amps

13. Complete the sentence: Where air rises, atmospheric pressure is ____? a) Low b) Cold c) High

8. What is an atom with an electric charge called? a) An electron b) A molecule c) An ion

14. In plate tectonics, what is the process of one plate being pushed under another called? a) Induction b) Abduction c) Subduction

9. What is the name for an area in which only one single species of crop grows? a) Microclimate b) Biodiversity c) Monoculture

15. What does the term ‘archipelago’ refer to? a) A narrow river or stream that flows into a larger one b) A chain or group of islands c) A large volcanic crater

18. Who said ‘As long as war is regarded as wicked it will always have its fascination.’ a) John F. Kennedy b) Winston Churchill c) Oscar Wilde Readers can order a copy of Back To Basics for a special price of £6.99 including p&p (RRP £9.99) by calling 01903 828503 and quoting RT/BB (UK mainland only, while stocks last)

Answers 1 c) 2 b) 3 b) 4 b) 5 c) 6 a)

7 b) 8 c) 9 c) 10 c) 11 a) 12 a)

13 a) 14 c) 15 b) 16 b) 17 a) 18 c)

A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen Published by Hodder & Stoughton, £14.99 A Street Cat Named Bob

A Street Cat Named Bob is the inspiring true story of how a troubled Big Issue seller James Bowen, transformed his life after befriending a ginger tom cat. James found Bob five years ago injured in the hallway of his block of flats. After nursing him back to health he decided that it was only fair to allow Bob his freedom back, Bob had other ideas and so began a journey for both and would prove the catalyst for James’s road back to rehabilitation after drug dependency. He takes us on a journey through the London streets where both cat and man face many potential hazards busking or selling the Big Issue. The book makes us aware of the many problems that James faces in his daily life with his loyal friend Bob at his




side. Whether it’s travelling by bus perched on his shoulder as he walks through London or sitting calmly by his feet, Bob remains the one constant in James’s life. Reading James’s story also transports Must the reader to the world of the homeless read and dispossessed and gives a real insight on how it feels to be on the margins of society. James’s story is brave, heart wrenching and there are moments in the book when you fear for the survival of both James and Bob. Ultimately what I love about the book is that it reaffirms something that cat lovers have always known; that man’s best friend (and certainly James’s) really is his cat! n

Fairlakeliving’s latest Over 55 Scheme is launching Saturday 1st October

· Stylish 2 bedroom apartments and maisonettes exclusively for those aged over 55 · A range of purchase options available · Great access to Cardiff, Newport, Bristol and beyond

Join us for the launch at Parc Eglwys (Lovell development) 11am - 4pm and be among the first to see this exciting new development Parc Eglwys, Off Viaduct Way, Bassaleg NP10 8FN visit call 01633 233876

For 200 years , The National Benevolent Charity has been a lifeline to people who have fallen into poverty and distress and who have nowhere else to turn. People like nurse Leah, 58, and her artist husband David, 63.


wanted a happy retirement together but Leah became crippled with arthritis and cannot walk. David is dedicated to his wife and cares for her full time. But, the loss of earned income has been devastating, and they are poverty-stricken. Despite state benefits, sickness, disability and old age can still mean a life of awful hardship. For Leah and David and hundreds like them, The National Benevolent Charity can help.

Please support the 1812-2012 Bi-Centenary Appeal Donations should be sent to:

The National Benevolent Charity Peter Hervé House, Eccles Court, Tetbury, Gloucestershire GL8 8EH For more info visit www. t h e n b c . o r g . u k or telephone 01666 505500 Patron: HRH The Prince of Wales Registered Charity Number 212450 RETIREMENT



Now is the season


pring is a tease; it has come-hither eyes, laden with promise. A traveller in a desert, the cook is beckoned with fresh green shoots but little substance. Spring is lean and filled with ‘suggestion’ a well-prepared store cupboard nearly empty; empty seed beds nearly full. Spring is hope, and waiting. The cook and the gardener stand ready at spring’s whim for a mock summer day or steeled against winter’s return, appreciating the pared-back lines of garden beds and dishes still hearty but with hints of vibrant spring greens. Recipes from Now is the Season by Laura Faire, published by New Holland.

Rose Fool

A fool is really just flavour suspended in a creamy substance – this could be a puree suspended in a custard or cream. This delicate rose fool benefits from the sharpness of a little yoghurt. 1/2 cup water 1 tablespoon rosewater 1/2 cup sugar 1–2 drops natural red food colouring (optional) 1 cup yoghurt 1 cup cream rose petals (spray-free) icing sugar Combine the water, rosewater, sugar and food colouring in a small saucepan and dissolve over a low heat without stirring. This should take at least 10 minutes. Cool. Combine the cooled rose syrup with the yoghurt. Beat the cream till firm and fold through the yoghurt mixture. Spoon into serving dishes and chill. Top with rose petals and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving. Takes 15 minutes, plus cooling time Serves 4

Line-caught Fish Roasted in Chive, Parsley & Pink Peppercorn Butter This herb butter also works well on any white meat – smear it on free-range pork chops before grilling, or rub under the skin of a roasting bird. 800–900g firm-fleshed white fish 1 bunch curly parsley 1 bunch of chives 50g softened butter 2 tablespoons canola oil 2 teaspoons sea salt flakes 2 teaspoons pink peppercorns, crushed Preheat the oven to 220ºC. Wash and dry the fish and cut into 4 finger length pieces. Finely chop the parsley and chives and combine with the butter, oil, salt and pink peppercorns. Lightly oil a baking rack and place inside a roasting dish. Arrange the fish pieces on the rack and smear with two thirds of the butter mixture. Keep the remaining butter to serve. Roast for 5–7 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish. Remove from the oven and cover with foil and a tea towel to allow the fish to finish cooking in its own residual heat for another 5 minutes. Serve with Chorizo, Caraway & Green Pea Pod Paella Takes 15 minutes

Now is the season

Serves 4




Gnocchi with Early Basil & Bacon Gnocchi is possibly the best thing to do with a glut of potatoes. It is not only delicious, it is versatile and can be served as a side or a meal in itself. 1kg floury potatoes 2 egg yolks 50g parmesan, grated 1 cup stone ground flour, sifted 100g bacon, chopped and cooked till crisp 1 cup baby basil leaves 20g parmesan, finely grated Peel the potatoes and cut into quarters. Boil in salted water for 30 minutes. Strain into a colander and allow to steam off until nice and dry, then push through a sieve or a ricer into a large mixing bowl. Beat the yolks and parmesan into the potatoes with a wooden spoon and then stir in the flour, a tablespoon or two at a time, until a firm dough is formed. Knead the dough on the bench top with the remaining flour. Divide the dough into 4 and roll each section into a fat worm about 2cm thick. Cut into 2–3cm lengths and mark each gnocchi with a flour-dipped fork. Squeeze each one gently into a little hump. Spread the gnocchi out on a floured oven tray and

Parmesan & Tarragon Crusted Chicken Schnitzel

French tarragon has a strong flavour that becomes stronger when it is dried. 2 chicken breasts, halved horizontally

rest for at least 10 minutes or until ready to cook. To cook, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Drop the gnocchi into the water in batches and bring back to the boil. Remove the gnocchi when they have risen to the surface. Serve with the bacon, basil leaves and parmesan.

3/4 cup flour 1 teaspoon mineral salt and

Takes 1 hour

1 teaspoon white pepper

Serves 4–6

2 eggs, beaten 1/4 cup water 1 cup fresh parmesan, finely grated 1 cup dried breadcrumbs 2 tablespoons French tarragon leaves, chopped (or 2 teaspoons dried tarragon) 8 tablespoons canola oil 1 tablespoon of capers and 4 lemon wedges to serve Preheat the oven to 200ºC. Place the chicken pieces on a clean board, cover with waxed paper and bash with a rolling pin to flatten so that they are even, like a thick schnitzel. Prepare three large dishes with the following ingredients: one with combined flour, salt and pepper; one with the beaten eggs and water; and one with the combined parmesan, breadcrumbs and tarragon. Coat the chicken pieces first in the flour, then the egg, then the crumb mixture. Repeat, so that each piece has been coated twice.

Now is the season

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frying pan and fry the first piece of chicken until golden on each side. Place on a baking tray while cooking the remaining pieces. When all the chicken pieces are fried until golden, place in the oven for 10–15 minutes until cooked through. Serve with Handmade Herb Mayonnaise and fresh rocket. Takes 30 minutes Serves 4 RETIREMENT




ith Europe’s Mediterranean countries in dire economic straits, where can Brits go to escape Austerity Britain and find their place in the sun? Turkey, that’s where. Over the past decade,Turkey’s value-for-money has drawn British holidaymakers in their thousands. Now, worried about making ends meet in the UK, increasing numbers of pensioners are making that holiday permanent. It’s easy to see why. In Didim, on Turkey’s Aegean coast, a luxury two bed apartment can cost just £30-40k; a stunning 4bed/4 bath villa £120k. The cost of living is equally attractive; £150 comfortably covers an entire month’s shopping for an average couple, with electricity at under £20 a month and council tax £30 a year! Marian Blohm retired to Mavisehir in 2008. “I wondered what my Turkish neighbours would make of me, being a single woman, but I needn’t have worried; they’re lovely people. The only thing I miss is my central heating; but, if I’d stayed in Preston, it would have been unaffordable, and here winter only lasts a few weeks and most of that’s sunny.” Marian paid £55,000 for her four bed/three bath villa overlooking magnificent Mavisehir bay. Linda and Joe Dudley, on the other

Along the coast in Akbuk, permanent residents Peter and Josie Penfold are living the dream in their 4 bed/4 bath minimansion, complete with swimming pool, rose garden and panoramic sea views; cost just £120k. “We weren’t impressed with Spain and we knew Turkey, our daughter has a villa in Kalkan. The only thing we miss is our family, but, with budget airlines now coming on stream, we and they can pop back and forth almost any time.”


Transferring your UK pension is even easier. It can be paid directly into your Turkish bank account, or can be drawn from your UK account using your bank card, and is not subject to tax.

Retiring to Turkey

hand, are currently renting a prime-location duplex by Altinkum’s second beach for just 460 lira (approx. £220) a month. “We bought a holiday apartment four years ago, but it wasn’t suitable for our pets when we retired, so we sold that and rented this for the garden, while we find exactly what we want.” Despite their lack ofTurkish, Linda and Joe have no communication problems. “Where we are, everybody speaks English. Further into town it can be harder, but it’s never a problem; the Turkish people are so friendly.” Pam and Richard Johnson, originally from Southampton, agree. “We carry a phrase book around, that helps a lot, though in the banks and restaurants everyone speaks English, even the checkout girls at the supermarket.” Pam and Richard spend half the year in their immaculate penthouse apartment, enjoying all the benefits of a gated complex with pools, restaurant, Turkish bath and gym. “Life in the UK was so stressful. Here it’s exactly the opposite. It forces you to slow down, to adjust to retirement; the people do that; they’re fantastic. And there’s nothing you can’t get, if you shop around.”




So what are the practicalities of retiring to Turkey? Buying a house is much simpler than in the UK. Estate agents abound, but beware, many are unlicensed. Pam and Richard Johnson: “Seek recommendations and check out web forums to ensure the one you choose is bone fide and reputable.” The buying process itself usually takes just a day. There are no surveys; if the property is re-sale, you buy what you see; new builds and off plan come with a ten year structural guarantee. Agent Ramazan Koseoglu: “the solicitor draws up the contract in English and Turkish on the terms agreed by buyer and seller and is responsible for ensuring that all documentation is correct and that the deeds (Tapu) are free from encumbrance. The property is officially the buyer’s when the Tapu designating them as owner is returned from the authorities. However, as this can take three or four months, in practice, often the buyer will receive the keys on signing the contract. With an off plan property the completion of the property, the delivery of the Tapu and the final staged payment generally coincide.” A resident’s visa is needed to live in Turkey. Marian Blohm has a renewable one-year visa costing approx. £50 (reduced from £320 in 2011), although longer terms are available.“There are people who just renew their visitor’s visa (£10) every three months by taking the Ferry to Kos or Samos, but you can’t import your belongings or get a telephone/internet landline without a proper resident’s visa.” Peter and Josie Penfold imported their furniture. “Though, with the duty charged together with removal costs, we would have been better off disposing of it in the UK and buying new here.” Both Marian Blohm and the Penfolds sold up in the UK to buy in Turkey. However, letting your UK property and renting in Turkey can be an attractive option. A three bed house in South West England will let for

between £600-800 per month. A similar property in South Western Turkey can be rented for as little as 400TL (£175) per month. Bringing pets to Turkey is no problem. Linda and Joe Dudley: “We did it through DEFRA. It cost us £325 per cat, plus injections and chip, door to door.” Transferring your UK pension is even easier. It can be paid directly into your Turkish bank account, or can be drawn from your UK account using your bank card, and is not subject to tax.

Feel liberated with our flexible Travel Insurance Retirement Today readers – book before 31.07.12 to get 10% discount

TURKEY By Chris Baker

The Dolmus (public minibus) is the ex-pats’ favoured method of transport. Only Peter and Josie Penfold currently have a car, costing around it’s UK equivalent. Marian Blohm’s pride and joy is an electric scooter. It came tax free, insurance free, does 90km per charge and is topped up at home, all for a few hundred pounds. Although healthcare is an issue, insurance and even private hospital treatment are remarkably affordable. Linda and Joe’s daughter had an iron railing extracted from her leg - total cost, including hospitalisation, X-ray, anaesthetic, stitching and tetanus shot, approx £70. With all your favourite soaps available on Sky TV, Turkey really can be a sunny home from home. Would any of those interviewed go back to the UK? The answer was a unanimous and resounding, “not on your life!” n For many travellers and those with pre-existing medical conditions, finding the perfect insurance provider can be difficult. As one of the UK’s leading specialist providers of Travel Insurance, we can provide cover for your pre-existing medical conditions, subject to acceptance following a quick medical screening over the telephone. So you can enjoy your holidays safe in the knowledge that you are comprehensively insured. Our comprehensive range of insurance policies include: • Cruise Travel – no age limit and no £ limit for cancellation • Annual Multi-Trip Travel – up to 90 days travel any one trip • Trip Travel – 4 levels of cover to choose from • Global Adventure Traveller – for up to 18 months continuous travel

travel insurance To speak in confidence to our travel and health specialist team please call us on:

0800 848 8448 or visit: onestop4: is a trading name of International Travel and Healthcare Limited. Registered office address is: West House, 46 High Street, Orpington, Kent, BR6 0JQ. International Travel and Healthcare are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority no. 433367

RETIREMENT 275x90_RetirementToday_Ad_19.04.12.indd 1


Retiring to Turkey

Acknowledgements: Marian Blohm; Linda and Joe Dudley; Pam and Richard Johnson; Peter and Josie Penfold; Prestige Construction Ltd (Turkey); the Turkish Embassy (London) website.


18/04/2012 19:49

Out&About..... Six Days of the Best International Music & Dance in Llangollen, North Wales

Competitions • Choir Of The World • Folk Friday Folk Music & Dance • Children’s Day • One World One Stage Retail & Shopping Outlets • LlanFest • Celebrity Concerts Performances & Workshops for all the Family

3 - 8 July 2012

Lesley Garrett


The extremely popular Open Garden Squares Weekend, which is held throughout London every June is for the first time, being held in association with the National Trust. Around 200 communal gardens, many that are not usually open to the public, will be taking part ranging from the historic to the traditional through to roof gardens and allotments. Among the green spaces open especially for Open Garden Squares Weekend will be many of the much loved and popular gardens such as HMP Wormwood Scrubs; Eaton Square, Bonnington Square, Cable Street Community Gardens, The Regent’s Park Allotment Garden, and many more, 25 London Boroughs will be taking place and many will be offering exclusive activities, guided tours and refreshments as well as selling plants. For further information visit

Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival

Dartington International Summer School

25 May – 5 June

Running for over 30 years, the Dumfries and Galloway Art Festival provides a varied and lively mix of entertainment, something for everyone, young and old, with all the usual genres of music and the arts represented. For 12 days the festival fills theatres, village halls, cafes, churches, forests, gardens, galleries, a mill and garden centre with a diverse cultural programme.

21 July - 25 August 2012

Artistic Director John Woolrich

Exceptional teaching Inspirational performances Immerse yourself in music Dartington International Summer School, Space, Dartington Hall, Totnes, Devon, TQ9 6EN Phone: +44 (0)1803 847080 Email:

Out & About





Cosi Fan Tutte

For further information visit

Summer School for music lovers 21 July – 25 August

Dartington International Summer School is the biggest and oldest classical music festival and summer school in the South West. Situated on the idyllic Dartington Hall estate, in the heart of the South Devon countryside, their festival welcomes a vibrant community of musicians and music-lovers drawn from all corners of the globe. This year, the summer school runs from 21 July – 25 August. Courses include Choir, Vocal Ensembles and Chamber Music plus a diverse range of instrumental and vocal classes featuring such esteemed artists as Dame Emma Kirkby, Natalie Clein and Stephen Kovacevich. There’s much to enthral the early music lover too, including Baroque Dance, Baroque Dramatic Choruses and Mediaeval & Renaissance Music. They also offer non-classical and world music courses including Jazz, Balinese Gamelan, Improvisation, Gospel Choir, Samba, Choro, Salsa, Folk Music, African Drumming, an exciting programme of daily concerts, talks and much, much more. A week’s stay inclusive of courses, concerts, meals and accommodation starts at £600. For further details, please visit or call 01803 847080.

Railfest 2012: Britain’s biggest rail celebration York 2-10 June The National Railway Museum is hosting the UK’s biggest rail celebration. The nine day celebration will see an enormous space the size of 11 football pitches bustling with an awe-inspiring line up of more than 50 locomotives including record-breaking historic and modern locomotives from the museum’s collection and visiting locomotives from across the UK. A wide variety of railway-related activities, attractions, sights, sounds and smells will add to the exciting atmosphere with the opportunity to get up close to the exhibits. For further information visit

Llangollen International Eisteddfod

Michelangelo Buonarrotti (1475-1564) The Dream (Il Sogno), c. 1533 Black chalk, 398 x 280 mm ©The Courtauld Gallery, London

Mantegna to Matisse:

03 July – 08 July 2012

A vibrant festival of music, dance and culture held in the picturesque Dee Valley setting, the Llangollen International Eisteddfod dedicates a week to exciting competitions from competitors from all over the world. From choreographed dance groups to choral competitions there’s a chance to enjoy a feast of high class music and dance from four corners of the globe. At the end of the week all the winners from the choral competitions will go head to head to compete for the ultimate prize of Choir of the World and the converted Pavarotti Trophy. And that’s not all! There’s a chance to enjoy evening performances from world class artists such as Alfie Boe, Alison Balsom, Lesley Garrett, John Owen-Jones, Wynne Evans and many, many more. For more information or to book your tickets now, visit: or call 01978 862000.

The Courtauld Gallery holds one of the most important collections of drawings in Britain. Organised in collaboration with The Frick Collection in New York, this exhibition presents a magnificent selection of some sixty of its finest works. It offers a rare opportunity to consider the art of drawing in the hands of its greatest masters, including Dürer, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Goya, Manet, Cézanne and Matisse. Despite the important preparatory function of drawing, many of the most appealing works in the exhibition were unplanned and resulted from artists reaching for their sketchbooks to capture a scene for their own pleasure. For further information visit

Gardening Scotland 2012 Friday 1 June – for three days

WHEN it comes to ways to spend your leisure time, there’s nothing that can beat gardening. What else can keep you fit and fed at the same time? Whether you are an expert on plants or a complete beginner you will find everything you need to keep your plot looking beautiful at Gardening Scotland 2012. The national gardening and outdoor living show held at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh will be packed to the rafters with beautiful plants. Plus. there is a huge craft marquee filled with artwork, jewellery and home accessories, as well as The Food Fayre, one of the most popular features of the Show, making this a great day out. For more information visit or call 0131 333 0965. ©Kate


Fishguard International Music Festival 19-29 July

Fishguard International Music Festival was founded in 1970 by local choirmaster John S. Davies together with other enthusiasts. Under John’s leadership as Artistic Director, the Festival became one of Wales’s most successful and prestigious Festivals drawing artists (and audiences) from across the world. Classical concerts are performed in Fishguard and Goodwick and in other venues in the area. Rhos-y-Gilwen Mansion receives the Festival annually now in its newly built grand concert hall. The 43rd Festival will celebrate, particularly the music of Frederick Delius (1862-1934) and John Ireland (1870 – 1962). Tasmin Little, Julian Lloyd Webber, Peter Donohoe, Roderick Williams, John S. Davies Singers, Orchestra of The Swan conductor David Curtis, Orchestra of Welsh National Opera with Rui Pinheiro and Owain Arwel Hughes, National Youth Orchestra of Wales with Carlo Rizzi. The Dante String Quartet, Ben Frith, Richard Jenkinson, Matter of Brass and the Tuxedo Jazz Orchestra will all appear in this year’s Festival. RETIREMENT


Out & About

The Courtauld Gallery, London 14 June to 9 September 2012

Julian Lloyd Webber ©Simon Fowler licensed to EMI Classics

Master drawings from the Courtauld Gallery


43rd Fishguard International

MUSIC FESTIVAL 19 - 29 July 2012

‘‘One of the world’s best value classical music festivals; it’s a real Welsh gem not to be missed’’ A GREAT part of the world...

Orchestra of Welsh National Opera conductors Rui Pinheiro and Owain Arwel Hughes

with Tasmin Little and Julian Lloyd Webber National Youth Orchestra of Wales conducted by Carlo Rizzi



Orchestra of the Swan Peter Donohoe Mark Bebbington Ben Frith Richard Jenkinson The Dante String Quartet with Lars Vogt (piano) Roderick Williams with Susie Allan (piano) The Tuxedo Jazz Orchestra Peter Medhurst Philip Salmon (tenor) and Robbie Norman (violin)


Music, Events, Coast, Countryside and Dining Enquiries Tel: 01348 891345

Box Office (June) 01348 875538 Supported by

The John Ireland Trust, The Delius Trust, The Ralph Vaughan Williams Charitable Trust




A great place to visit or stay, a great place to relax or play Come and visit Hayling Island, Emsworth, Havant and the surrounding area Tel: 023 9246 7111 Email:

For a chance to win any of the prizes, send your name and address (quoting reference code) to: Amra Media Solutions, The Old Lavender Mill, 46a Brook Street, Aston Clinton, Bucks, HP22 5ES or email:



Win Tickets to see Neil Simon’s The Sunshine Boys

A series of outdoor picnic conce at Kew Gardens: 3-8 July

KEW THE MUSIC is a glorious summer music experience. World class artists perform in a week long series of picnic concerts set against the backdrop of the magnificent Victorian Temperate House, in the beautiful botanical setting of Kew Gardens. With its laid back festival atmosphere, KEW THE MUSIC has all the ingredients for the perfect summer’s night out to be shared with friends and family. For more information, or to book tickets, visit 3 July STATUS QUO with The Straits 4 July M PEOPLE with Chic 5 July PINK MARTINI with TIM MINCHIN 6 July JAMES MORRISON 7 July WILL YOUNG with Nerina Pallot 8 July GIPSY KINGS with Los Lobos The winner will receive a pair of tickets to the concert of their choice. For a chance to win, send in your details , quoting ref. KM. Closing date: 10 June 2012.

T’s and C’s: The prize is non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.


Golden Globe and Emmy award-winner Danny DeVito makes his West End debut alongside Olivier and Tony award-winner Richard Griffiths, in a new production of Neil Simon’s hilarious and moving comedy The Sunshine Boys. Kings of comedy, Willie Clark (Danny DeVito) and Al Lewis (Richard Griffiths) aka ‘The Sunshine Boys’ haven’t spoken to each other in years. When CBS call for the vaudevillian greats to be reunited for a television special, past grudges resurface as they take centre stage once more. Ageing ailments aside, can this legendary double-act overcome their differences for one last show? Old rivalry and vintage hilarity abound in this classic comedy of showbiz and friendship. Directed by Thea Sharrock, The Sunshine Boys looks set to be the theatrical event of the year. For your chance to win a pair of tickets, send in your details , quoting ref. SB

Private No. 1 Suspect Award-winning author James Patterson is back with the next compelling release in the popular PRIVATE franchise with Private No.1 Suspect, a thrilling and truly enthralling murder story, out in hardback, from Century. When Jack’s former lover is found dead in his bed, he instantly becomes the number one suspect. Whilst the focus of a police investigation, Jack is still under pressure from the mob and a beautiful hotel owner needs him to solve a string of murders. With his team stretched to breaking point and one of his most trusted colleagues threatening to leave PRIVATE, is Jack facing his biggest challenge yet? We have 3 books to giveaway. For a chance to win send in your details, quoting ref. PNS Closing date: 20 June 2012.

Closing date: 17 May 2012 T’s and C’s: Tickets valid for Monday – Thursday performances until 31st May 2012. Prizes are non-transferable and non-exchangeable and there is no cash alternative. If necessary for any reason, the prize (or any part of it) may be substituted for a prize of equivalent monetary value.

Lawrenson, Edward Louis 1868-1940 The Wooden Plough Oil on canvas; signed with initials, inscribed with title on old label verso Exhibitor: The Maas Gallery

This year, with the focus on London and Britain, it’s unsurprising that British craftsmanship is in the global spotlight. British design has survived and thrived over the centuries and evolved into successful 21st century luxury brands. Both old and new are still highly sought after the world over.

The 40th Olympia International Fine Art & Antiques Fair takes place from Thursday 7th to Sunday 17th June, 2012. Attracting over 32,000 visitors the fair has, for many years, been a destination for buyers searching for high calibre pieces that can’t be found on the high street. We have 2 pairs of tickets to giveaway. For a chance to win, send in your details, quoting ref.OIF Closing date: 4 June 2012

Win tickets to BBC Gardeners World Live 13 – 17 June at NEC Birmingham

With so many new ideas, experts and flower varieties, this year promises to be the most vibrant BBC Gardeners’ World Live, ever. From Alan Titchmarsh’s expert knowledge in the BBC Gardeners’ World Live Theatre, to unmissable shopping, your imagination is sure to bloom like marigolds in summer. Plus, free entry into the BBC Good Food Show Summer Complete your day by going from seed to plate. With free entry into the BBC Good Food Show Summer, you can see top chefs including James Martin and feast on all the tips, inspiration and ingredients you need to produce sensational summer treats. We have 5 pairs of tickets to giveaway. For your chance to win send in your details, quoting ref. GWL Closing date: 7 June 2012 RETIREMENT



London’s Most Established Art and Antiques Fair Celebrates Enduring British Design


Activity and exercise


hen you’re really tired, even routine tasks like having a shower or washing up become an effort. And you tend to slow down. Tasks that should be easy become difficult, or take more time than they should, or take a long time to recover from – or any combination of the three. Sing the praises of ‘exercise’ all you want, but the tired person is unlikely to be fired up. Even the prospect of a ‘nice brisk walk’, so often put forward by doctors as a kind of last-ditch attempt to get people moving, may fail to appeal. Enthusiasm for movement in general – as opposed simply to ‘exercise’, a word that always implies making an extra effort – tends to decrease in direct proportion to a person’s tiredness. To use a favourite phrase of my grandmother’s, the less you do, the less you want to do. Oversimplification though this is, there is some truth in it in cases of ordinary fatigue. We know that just one week of resting in bed reduces your muscle strength by 10 per cent. The more unfit you become, the more tired you will be when you try to do something. The fitter you are, the better you can resist the invidious onslaught of tiredness. Everything – even driving a car – becomes easier, and less fatiguing, when you are fit. It’s well documented that ‘exercise’ gives you more energy, building up energy and endurance. A fit person finds everything easier, from walking to school to picking up the kids, to running for the train or getting through a long day at work.

Exercise gets your heart and lungs going, oxygenates your entire system and boosts your mood. Muscular movement gets toxins flowing through the body’s lymph system to the liver and kidneys, whence they can be excreted by the body. By helping the body to eliminate stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline, exercise helps you relax and sleep better. In a study published in the Psychological Bulletin, the researchers analysed 70 studies on exercise and fatigue involving more than 6,800 people. More than 90 per cent of the studies showed that sedentary people who completed a regular exercise programme reported improved fatigue compared with those who did not exercise. The average effect was greater than the improvement from using stimulant medications.

But, as stated, unfortunately tiredness itself militates against ‘exercise’. The project of stepping out boldly in the competitive air of a gym alongside rather fit and rather energetic enthusiasts, or the whole paraphernalia of trying to go swimming in a public swimming pool on a cold morning, is almost guaranteed to turn off the average person suffering from tiredness. So why not keep it gentle to begin with, and have a long-term aim of building up your fitness and energy to the point where you can decide to take it further if you want to. The real aim is to build enough fitness to get through the average day and have a bit left over for emergencies – running for the bus or after a runaway toddler, driving out to pick up a stranded teenager at 11 pm. Or just feeling how nice it is to get to the end of the day and be pleasantly tired, rather than tumbling into bed at an early hour in a state of absolute exhaustion. Energy building, and energy conservation, ideally means having something in the bank, or keeping it in reserve, rather than having to spend it all as you go along.


Walking is an ideal way to get the system going, exercise muscles and get some fresh air at the same time. Try to build it up slowly on a day by day basis and don’t worry if you don’t get too far at first. Like losing weight, exercise is best done gradually, bit by bit. Walk halfway round the block today, and all the way round tomorrow. Don’t push yourself. Almost any exercise, however small, is better than none, and if you build it up little by little, progress will be made, even if it is gradual.

Activity and exercise

Exercise gets your heart and lungs going, oxygenates your entire system and boosts your mood






Every year thousands of people put their faith and trust in Cats Protection when looking for a new addition to the family. Behind each volunteer and member of staff is a wealth of experience and expertise which means when you adopt one of our cats, you can feel safe in the knowledge that he has been given the best possible care. When he leaves Cats Protection, your cat will have been treated to a top-to-tail medical. This means he will have been: • Fully examined by a veterinary surgeon • Vaccinated at least once against flu and enteritis • Treated against fleas, roundworm and tapeworm • Neutered if old enough • Microchipped

We also provide four weeks’ free insurance (terms and conditions apply) giving invaluable peace of mind and reassurance as you and your cat embark upon this lifelong friendship. All he needs now is a loving home to make his dreams come true – over to you! T: 03000 12 12 12 E: W: Reg Charity 203644 (England and Wales) and SC037711 (Scotland)




The Mobility Roadshow

...driving mobility forward

21st, 22nd & 23rd June 2012

Open 10am daily Free admission & parking

Peterborough Arena (East of England Showground)

The UK’s original hands-on consumer event, showcasing mobility innovation for almost 30 years INSPIRATIONAL - be amazed at life-changing products and new ideas for YOUR independent lifestyle INFORMATIVE - gain a wealth of expert help, information and advice INTERACTIVE - test drive vehicles, wheelchairs, powerchairs, scooters, cycles; join in sport, watch demonstrations, activities for all the family

Register online for your FREE tickets at or call 0845 241 0390 New Prostate Quarter Design:Layout 1 23/10/2011 22:43 Page 1


For a FREE copy of this booklet please contact us at the address below.

This booklet has two aims: • to help you become better informed about prostate cancer and its treatment. • to guide you in the decisions you will make about your care with your doctor. It cannot replace talking to your GP or hospital doctor. If you can help us by raising funds for our research or to make a donation please contact us at the address below.

Everyone dreams of an active and fulfilling retirement but what if joint mobility problems threaten to interfere?

Collagen Plus could be the perfect tonic! Collagen Plus is the number one Collagen supplement combining Collagen, Glucosamine and Condroitin. Arthro Vite Ltd - manufacturers of Collagen Plus introduced Collagen to the UK in 1994 and have since built up a loyal following of customers. Is it time for you to try it out?

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BE AU TY BO NU S Collagen also improves the quality of skin, hair & nails.

Car dependence is a global health issue. Ian Roberts is professor of public health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Writing in the Guardian, he points out how every day about 3,000 people die and 30,000 people are seriously injured in traffic accidents, many of them children and in developing countries. By 2020, road crashes are expected to move from ninth to third place in the world ranking of the burden of disease and injury, and they will be in second place in developing countries. A report of Royal Automobile Club (RAC) underlines the increase in car dependency among UK residents. The study found that most motorists would be reluctant to switch to public transport, even if services were vastly improved. A massive 89 per cent of drivers surveyed said they would find life ‘very difficult’ without a car. Yet, car travel has drastically reduced our walking, most shamefully on short journeys (less than two miles), which make up a quarter of all car journeys. Car dependence is a major factor in our growing obesity crisis and all its related health issues such as heart health, osteoporosis and diabetes. So if you do nothing else, try leaving the car home for short journeys; plan in more time for walking to your destination.

Try stretching your body

Eastern style exercise such as tai chi, chi chung and yoga are specially designed to build health and energy, to stretch muscles and to help you to eliminate toxins, and stretching exercises seem to work well for those with fatigue. If a class seems too much effort, a video can help you to exercise at your own pace in the comfort of your own home, where you can stop as soon as you feel tired.Yoga is particularly good for tiredness.


Yoga is a centuries-old effective way to boost energy. It also relaxes the body and mind, improves blood flow and oxygenation, stretches muscles, improves breathing and reduces tension. Writing in the journal Neurology, researchers in the Department of Neurology at Oregon Health and Science University reported that yoga significantly reduced fatigue in people with multiple sclerosis. Many of the postures are designed to work on the hypothalamus, the master gland that controls the body’s endocrine system, and to combat fatigue, notably the shoulder stand. If you are not a yoga devotee, however, begin with something gentler – breathing and gentle stretching exercises.

Relaxation breath

Sit up, with your back straight. Place your tongue behind your upper teeth and keep it there throughout the exercise. Exhale completely through your mouth. Close your mouth and inhale through your nose to a count of four. Hold your breath for a count of seven. Exhale completely through your mouth, to a count of eight. Repeat this cycle three more times for a total of four breaths. Try to do this breathing exercise at least twice a day.

Deep diaphragm breath

Sit with your legs crossed in a comfortable position. Breathe slowly and evenly from your diaphragm, through your nose. Fill your lower abdomen, your lungs and then your chest with air. Hold for a four count then slowly exhale the air out from your chest, lungs and then the lower abdomen. Repeat three or four times.

Alternate nostril breathing

A great energizer, alternate nostril breathing synchronizes the left and right sides of the brain. Close the right nostril with your right thumb and inhale through the left nostril to the count of four seconds.Then close the left nostril with your right index finger, simultaneously opening your right nostril and exhaling through it to a count of eight seconds. Now inhale through the right nostril to the count of four seconds. Close the right nostril with your right thumb and exhale through the left nostril to a count of eight seconds. Repeat three times.

Exercise Tips

• Start low and work up slowly. Aim to build up exercise on a daily basis to comfortable levels, bit by bit. For example, if a 30-minute walk is too daunting, try a 10-minute one to start with, and build it up by five minutes a day. • If that is too much, try, say a fiveminute walk a day and stick with it for a week before increasing it. • ‘Exercise wipes me out’. Do listen to your body – if you’re tired after exercise, take heed and do less next time, until you do feel comfortable. But don’t give up. • Exercise slowly and rest afterwards. • Keep track of how much exercise you do, and how it affects you, with an activity journal. • Experiment – if you don’t fancy stretching exercises or yoga, think about swimming or a gentle game of tennis, or a dance class. Housework also counts as activity and light exercise. Look for motivation – for example, a pet dog will make daily walking more of a reality! • Stop before you feel tired – don’t push yourself to the limit • If you don’t feel up to exercising on a particular day, try to do some very gentle activity, but don’t force yourself. Almost any exercise, however small, is better than none, but if nothing else, make sure you get some fresh air and daylight n An extract from Overcoming Tiredness and Exhaustion by Fiona Marshall, published by Sheldon Press. ISBN 978-0-85969-964-8

Activity and exercise

Car dependence




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“Don’t spend what you don’t have”

Dyson Digital Slim

is the top money saving tactic in UK

But the most popular tactic, adopted by three in five people (57%), is a common sense approach - avoid spending what you don’t have and running up a debt on credit and store cards. Around 6.1 million more people are making sure they “don’t spend what they don’t have.”** Research shows that half of the UK (50%) regularly makes sure they shop around for the best prices at places such as the supermarket. Looking at those adults who could recall their habits three years ago in 2009, an increased number have turned to online voucher codes and loyalty cards to save money, and have also started budgeting. A third of people in the UK (30%) now set a weekly or monthly budget, up from only one in five (22%) saying they did so in 2009. * There are 48,478,300 adults in the UK. In 2009, 80% of UK adults (38,782,640) recall adopting financially efficient behaviours. This grew by 11% to 91% in 2012, meaning an additional 5,332,613 people adopted these behaviours. ONS population statistics as (1) above. **48,478,300 adults in UK, ONS population stats as (1) above. Research shows that 44.67% of people recalled focusing on” not spending what they don’t have” in 2009, but 57.31% take this tactic in 2012. That’s a 12.64% difference of 5.8 million people.

Osborne missing opportunity to save Britain £30bn The Chancellor has apparently ignored an economic study conducted by the reputable Oxford Economics and passed-up the chance of helping those older people who want to move abroad. If he ended an unfair pension policy which affects over half a million pensioners, then he could take pressure off of public services and free up housing units. The policy in question is the freezing of pensions; if you choose to retire abroad, you will not have your pension increased in-line with inflation, so your pension will be worth less and less each year. This unfair policy has a random application and affects some of the most popular retirement destinations such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand and most of the Commonwealth countries. However, sometimes crossing the border can mean that difference between a pensioner losing out on thousands of pounds or not for example, pensions are frozen in Canada but not in the US.

RETIRED NATION IS SITTING ON £96.41 BILLION OF PERSONAL DEBTS New research from retirement income specialist MGM Advantage reveals that the average retired person has £8,180 of personal debt, collectively equating to a staggering £96.41billion. The average level of personal debt for a retired man is £9,007, compared to £7,350 for a retired woman. Around 178,000 retired people each owe £100,000 or more, and just over 729,000 owe between £25,000 and £100,000. Only 57% of the retired population has no personal debt.

The first thing you notice about the Dyson Digital Slim is that it is weightless, great for carrying up those winding stairs. It has a detachable wand , is cordless and has a 15 minute run time making it great for cars too. There is no bending, and due to its height it can reach those impossible high places making it great for back, shoulders and neck. Perfect for anyone who’s mobility is restricted or just finds household chores something that they want to get over with as quickly and efficiently as possible to quote James Dyson ‘ Our digital motor has taken over ten years to develop. Because of it speed – it spins five times faster than a Formula 1 car engine – it’s smaller, stronger and more efficient, making DC35 a smaller, lighter, and more powerful machine’. The Dyson Digital Slim is on sale at, retailing at £219.99

Aston Goodey, Director, MGM Advantage said: “These figures are alarming. As the cost of living New time-saving continues to put pressure on parking service household finances, many launched at Glasgow retired people will feel under Airport growing pressure to take on Older Scottish travellers can debt to fund everyday living. soon expect to enjoy a hassle “There are things you can and heavy-lifting free trip to do to minimise the chances and from Glasgow Airport, of funding your retirement thanks to a new meet and greet through debt. It is vital that parking service launching in April. people shop around for the best annuity rate to maximise the income they receive. The difference between the best and worst rates can be as much as 50%. People should also make sure they are claiming all of the State benefits to which they are entitled and also ensure that they have accounted for all old savings accounts and pension plans.” On a regional basis, the average retired person in Wales has personal debt of £13,857, which is the highest in Britain. This is followed by £11,758 in the South West, and £11,255 in London.

The new service run by Stress Free Parking will allow older passengers to drive straight to Glasgow Airport’s departure terminal in their own car. On arrival, they will be met by a uniformed chauffeur who will help them out with their luggage, then transfer their vehicle to a secure holding facility while they walk the short distance to the check-in desk. On their return to the airport, passengers will be met outside the arrivals exit with their vehicle ‘warmed and ready for their onward journey’. According to recent research conducted by airport parking price comparison website, airport meet and greet parking can save travellers up to two hours on their journey. This is something which will appeal to older travellers who want to take the stress and hassle out of travelling by reducing the time spent walking and carrying heavy luggage. RETIREMENT



Research carried out for Standard Life suggests that, in the last three years, 5.3 million additional UK adults* have started adopting money saving habits, such as reviewing their utility providers, going online to find the best deals and using online voucher codes to save money. According to Standard Life’s ‘Financial Efficiency’ research, the recent downturn has now encouraged more than nine out of ten (91%) of us to engage in financially efficient behaviours.

O.K, I will admit it, I have got excited by a vacuum cleaner but then the new Dyson Digital Slim really isn’t any old vacuum cleaner. I live in a 200 year old cottage with all the cleaning problems it brings, with the added burden of a very unreliable cleaner, so anything that can make my weekend cleaning chores substantially easier has definitely got my vote.




hoosing a London hotel can often prove a minefield with past horrors still a distant memory. We recently had a chance to visit one hotel who seem to have made a lasting impression and worthy of a special mention to readers. A great base for some of the best attractions in London,The Park Plaza Sherlock Holmes Hotel, a boutique hotel with stylish rooms and chilled atmosphere, makes the perfect location for a London Break. Friendly, welcoming staff and excellent facilities make this 4* hotel stand out from many of its contemporaries. Situated on Baker Street, (the street’s most famous resident’s memorabilia is accented throughout the hotel) it is just a short distance from many of London’s top attractions, Theatre Land, The Wallace Collection, Lords Cricket Ground, Oxford St, Marylebone High Street and London Zoo making it an ideal location for shopping and sightseeing. We stayed in one of the spacious executive rooms, which are both comfortable and elegant. The hotel boasts 119 rooms in total ranging from standard rooms to split level loft suites, all fitted to the highest standard providing the guest with a tranquil base in the heart of London. Although the area provides every type of cuisine one could ask for, we opted to eat in the hotel, where the excellent Sherlock’s Bar and Grill serves modern British and European cuisine, using organic and free range produce in a relaxed and contemporary style. Breakfast was one of the highlights of our stay, and I was more than pleased to note that along with a full buffet there was also a chance to order off menu great breakfast choices such as Eggs Benedict and American Pancakes. Just the thing before giving your credit card a bashing in some of London’s iconic stores! Rooms start from £119.00, excluding VAT per night. The hotel offers special packages which can be checked out on the hotel website. T-5355-AISPA LADY AD 2011 FP:Layout 1 9/12/11 12:10 Page Tel 020 7486 6161,


Help us prevent animal suffering A great many animals suffer unnecessarily due to our lack of knowledge and understanding of their needs and how best to meet them. UFAW promotes research and education, developing practical solutions to welfare problems, and disseminates the results worldwide through publications, workshops and international conferences.

provides care and protection for animals in Italy Animals have no nationality

Your support will make a lasting difference for millions of animals now and in the future. For more information about UFAW or how you can support this work through a donation or gift in your Will, contact:

Please support the Anglo-Italian Society for the Protection of Animals I enclose a donation of £…………(Cheque/PO/CAF made payable to: AISPA) or donate on-line at

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Sc i e nc e i n the Se r v i c e o f Ani ma l Wel f are

‘Genetic welfare problems more extensive and serious than expected’ says UFAW.

that have arisen as a result of selection for arbitrary aspects of appearance. When, tens or hundreds of years ago people bred for the particular shapes, sizes and appearances that appealed to them, they had no idea that they were sometimes selecting for serious diseases at the same time. With advances in knowledge of animal diseases the serious nature of many of these problems has come to light.” For example, when breeders first selected for the curly tails of pugs – because they liked the look - no one suspected that this could cause serious disease. But we know now that they achieved the curly tail by selecting for deformed tail bones and that the mutation that causes these can also affect the bones of the spine in the chest or back. In these cases, the affected spine bones do not align properly and this can result in very painful injuries to the spinal cord. The spinal cord damage can also cause partial paralysis of the hind limbs and incontinence due to loss of bladder control. This condition is considered a common problem in Pugs and other short-nosed breeds with screw-tails (it is estimated that the UK population of Pugs alone is around 30,000). The wolves from which all dogs are descended may have weighed about 25kg. Obviously, selection for larger and much smaller body sizes has been very successful: depending on the breed, adult dogs now range in weight from 1 to 100kg. But it seems that these changes in size have come at a price. For example, it has

been estimated that each Great Dane has a 40% chance of developing gastric torsion. This acute disease typically occurs after a meal. The stomach twists – perhaps because it is inadequately anchored within the cavernous bodies of these large dogs – such that the oesophagus at one end and the small intestine at the other are twisted shut. As a result, it becomes massively distended with gas and fluid causing intense pain and leading to death if surgery is not performed urgently. It has been estimated that around 16% of Great Danes die from the condition. These and many other painful and serious diseases are the result of unwittingly selecting for them. Already on the website we have described over 70 conditions in about 90 breeds of companion animals (dogs, cats, rabbits, pigeons, goldfish), including 54 conditions in 47 breeds of dogs. These problems are now known, so it should be possible in many cases to make them very rare again ‘simply’ by reversing the process and selecting against them – by breeding from the animals that are not affected (although, in practice this may not always be very simple for various reasons, for example, because breeding strategies may have to take account of several diseases at once). The role of the UFAW website is to explain the welfare consequences of these diseases to make clear the importance of selecting against them and to highlight any tools and methods that can help with this. To help publicise the website, a poster has been produced and copies of this are now freely available from UFAW. RETIREMENT


‘Genetic welfare problems more extensive and serious than expected’ says UFAW.


uring the past two years, UFAW has been developing a website to provide clear and comprehensive information about the welfare consequences of hereditary problems in companion animals: to explain how these problems affect the quality of animals’ lives. While undertaking the work it has discovered that the levels and extent of adverse welfare effects is even greater than was anticipated. The purpose of the UFAW website on genetic welfare problems ( problems.php) is to help people who are thinking of acquiring a pet to decide which species, strain or breed to choose – to be aware of problems and know the right questions to ask when buying in order to help avoid perpetuating the problems. The site also provides information relevant to helping breeders avoid or tackle problems. It is unique in providing comprehensive and detailed information, presented in a readily understandable way, not only on the genetic conditions themselves but also, most importantly, on their effects on the pet’s welfare, and in its aim of covering many other types of companion animal in addition to dogs and cats. As such it provides a valuable resource not only for the public, breeders and veterinarians, but also for other websites relating to pet choice, breeding and welfare. “Preparing descriptions of all these genetic conditions for the website,” said James Kirkwood, UFAW’s Chief Executive and Scientific Director,“has really brought home to us the extent and severity of the welfare problems



The Little Sisters of the Poor is a Congregation of religious sisters dedicated to the service of the elderly of modest means, regardless of nationality or creed. Founded in France in 1839 by Jeanne Jugan, established in Britain in 1851, our work is today carried out among the elderly in thirty-one countries on five continents, with 17 Homes throughout England, Ireland and Scotland. In providing total care we believe in enabling Residents to fulfil their physical, social, emotional and spiritual needs. We have at heart to recognise their dignity, desire of being respected, esteemed and loved and their longing to feel themselves useful. With your help we wish to respond to their need for companionship, security in health as in sickness, until death, in a family atmosphere. We really do count on you for support to enable us to continue our care of the elderly. We greatly appreciate DONATIONS – GIFT AID – LEGACIES

Thank you


Sr. Stephen, Provincial House, 2a Meadow Road, London SW8 1QH Tel: 020 7735 0788 Fax: 020 7582 0973 Email: Registered Charity No. 234434

Meet Mairi. She’s decided to fight chest, heart and stroke illness to the very end. Providing vital support to society’s most vulnerable young people. We offer care, education and employment support, helping young people build themselves a brighter future.

Kibble’s mission began with a legacy from Miss Elizabeth Kibble in 1859. We’re asking you to act with the same generosity and consider remembering us in your Will.

Make the end a new beginning. A gift in your Will of any size can mean life to those suffering from chest, heart and stroke illness in Scotland. Gifts in Wills are crucial to our future. Please contact us on: 0131 225 4800 | | 24



For more information: Email. Tel. 0141 889 0044

Scottish Charity Number SC026917 Company Limited by Guarantee Registered in Scotland no 158220

A Forever Gift A legacy is one of the ways of making sure you make a difference beyond your lifetime. We look at this and other ways you can help.

How can you help the financial way? We would be churlish, to say the least, if we didn’t state that money is what makes all the difference. Without that so vital ingredient, many charities would not survive. Although it’s a subject many people don’t like to deal with, it is essential to keep your affairs in order. A legacy in a Will left to your favourite charity will ensure their work can be continued by another generation. Charitable organisations work silently and constantly purely for the benefit of others and although donations are welcomed by most charities, it is legacies that really can make a difference. There may be an economic downturn, but leaving even a little money to a charity, after taking care of loved ones, can make a vast difference. Of course, family and loved ones should always come first, but donations to charity in wills can sometimes mean your family avoids paying inheritance tax on your estate, as a legacy to charity is a tax-free gift, which means the charity receives the full value of the gift. By contributing in this way everyone benefits – the charity by receiving the gift and the donor because legacies are not subject to Inheritance Tax. It’s not just the rich and wealthy that leave money to charity when they die. Anyone can leave a legacy to charity however big or small. What matters is the end result, which is playing your part to help the good work live on, as without the gifts left in wills many of the charities we know and support today would not even exist. But also remember, the next time you go to your local supermarket or shopping centre and you’re asked to contribute to a charity, don’t just give money and forget about it. Say to yourself ‘I could help make a greater difference here”! n

Then, do something about it. Please!

Gift Aid and Inheritance Tax Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt welcomed an initiative to encourage more people to leave a charitable gift in their Will. “Times are tough at the moment and while people are feeling the pinch, more than half the population still give to charity each month,” he said. “What’s surprising is that only seven per cent of people ever leave money to a charity in their will. Including a gift to charity in a will is a great way to recognise an organisation that’s been there for you during your life.” Anyone leaving 10 per cent of their estate to charity in their Will from 6 April 2012 will benefit from a reduction in Inheritance Tax from 40% to 36%. Rob Cope, director of Remember A Charity, welcomed the tax incentive but said that the “collective challenge is now to reach beyond the top 3% to help create a social norm”. David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband are supporting the campaign encouraging people to leave 10 per cent of their estate to charity in their wills. The leaders of the three main political parties have pledged to leave at least 10 per cent of their estates to charity as part of the Legacy10 campaign, set up by Roland Rudd, chairman of the PR firm RLM Finsbury. RETIREMENT


A Forever Gift


isit a supermarket or shopping centre and there is a very good chance there will be somebody on the door or in the foyer, asking you to contribute to one charity or another. Switch on the TV and thousands of pounds are being raised from television viewers while they sit watching ‘fundraising’ programmes. Pick up any newspaper and read about the millions of pounds that are handed out by the lottery commission to all sorts of causes, deservedly or otherwise. So what is the effect of all this visible fund raising having on the general public? Could it just be making everyone believe that all charities are well supported, well funded and generally doing very nicely thank you! Sadly though, this is often not the case! To just survive another day is a constant struggle, with many charities fighting for every penny they can lay their hands on, especially in the current economic climate, many certainly without lottery funding! Some charities are fortunate in owning or having had bequeathed, properties but, as every house owner will know, the upkeep of any building will, in itself, cost a small fortune. So just how do charities that do such sterling work all over the country survive? The answer most will tell you, is their reliance solely on work done and income raised or donated by a loyal group of ‘friends’ and ‘supporters’.


Charity N E W S

London’s Air Ambulance is the UK’s first to carry on Board Celebrating 125 Years Blood Continuing to be at the forefront of In 2012, The Queen’s Nursing Institute is celebrating 125 years since the foundation of the charity in 1887. The charity is dedicated to improving the nursing care of people in their own homes.

The Institute was founded with a gift of £70,000 given by Queen Victoria in 1887 for the support and development of district nursing. This was most of the sum raised in a collection known as the ‘Women’s Jubilee Fund’, to which ‘the women of England’ were encouraged to contribute. Hence the Institute’s original name: Queen Victoria’s Jubilee Institute for Nurses. Nearly 20 years earlier, the illness of William Rathbone’s wife had led to him employing Mrs Robinson as a nurse in their home; and after his wife’s death, Mrs Robinson was sent out to provide the same skilled nursing care in the homes of the poor in Liverpool. It was her skill, dedication, and impact (Rathbone said that ‘she found she could do great and certain good’) in often appalling circumstances that inspired the development of the district nursing ‘model’. A programme of special events is planned to commemorate this historic milestone, and also to look to the future of community nursing. For more information, please call 020 7549 1400 or visit

medical innovation

London’s Air Ambulance, the Charity which runs London’s Helicopter Emergency Medical Service, has made history as the first air ambulance in the UK to carry blood on board its aircraft and cars. Every day in London, victims of major trauma are attended by London’s Air Ambulance. Many of these patients are suffering from catastrophic bleeding. Some die at the scene from blood loss and never make it to hospital. Until recently, the highly trained medical teams have been unable to transfuse blood at the scene of the incident. Normal saline has been used as an alternative but, as it does not carry oxygen, it is not the ideal resuscitation fluid. Blood carries oxygen which is delivered to major organs including the brain. A pre-hospital blood transfusion may improve the patient’s chance of survival. London’s Air Ambulance teams have attended over 26,000 missions in the Capital, and has an international reputation for pioneering medical procedures which have been adopted across the world. London’s Air Ambulance pioneered thoracotomy (open chest surgery) at the roadside and in 1993 produced one of the World’s first survivors from this procedure. For more information visit

Animal Sanctuary celebrates 30th Anniversary Mountains Animal Sanctuary is Scotland’s largest equine rescue centre. They are delighted to celebrate their 30th anniversary this year with an event to be held in October, details to be advised. During this time they have rescued over 600 horses. In a peaceful and safe haven their 98 horse residents enjoy a relaxing and tranquil life. Their small but dedicated team work 365 days a year, in all weather conditions, to ensure that the welfare needs of all horses, ponies and donkeys in their care are paramount. Whether it is feed, hay, warmth or medical matters they ensure that day to day nothing goes amiss.

Charity News

Come along and see their new donkey foal, Annie, born on 28th March. She is a joyful addition to their donkey family and already a firm favourite with staff and supporters. The sanctuary is open to visitors all year round and their Visitors Centre is the focal point for the start of their supporters’ on-going help and support to their charity work. They welcome you by whatever means possible including online via their website and Facebook pages to update you with news and events.




A life worth living Your legacy gift to Vitalise

Vitalise is a national charity offering a lifeline to people with severe disabilities and carers. Our purpose-built, accessible UK Centres offer our guests the opportunity to experience the kind of freedom that most of us take for granted. That’s why many thousands of disabled people and carers come to us for desperately-needed respite breaks each year. For them, their time with Vitalise means so much more than a mere change of scene - it means the difference between coping and despair. We simply couldn’t provide this service without the generosity of our supporters. If you remember Vitalise in your Will, or make a donation, you will be helping us make a difference to the lives of disabled people and carers for years to come.

To discuss your legacy gift to Vitalise, please call our Legacy Manager, Tony Parker, on 0303 303 0147 or email Registered charity number 295072

Registered Charity in England and Wales No. 1069438 We are dedicated to the welfare and rescue of greyhounds everywhere, especially those in Spain which are used for hunting and dreadfully abused. This work is successful but expensive. For sponsoring one of our rescues, helping by donating to our work or leaving us a legacy, please contact us, quoting ref. RT Greyhounds in Need 33 High Street Wraysbury, Middlesex, TW19 5DA Tel 01784 483206, Fax 01784 482501 Email: Please visit our website:

Donate your time to London’s Air Ambulance!

Make a difference in the City that you love Would you like to learn about healthy eating & physical activity while connecting with others your age on the phone? Join a fit as a fiddle telephone befriending group! (must be aged 65+) • Chat with others in your community from the comfort of your own home • Learn about useful and relevant ways to incorporate healthy eating and physical activity into your life • Get connected to local services you’re interested in • Phone groups only require a commitment of 1 hour per week for 6 weeks

Volunteers needed!

Free training over the telephone to run groups (must be aged 50+) For more information, visit: Or call Elizabeth at 08456199992

London’s Air Ambulance has vacancies for volunteers to help raise funds and spread awareness of the Charity. We save critically injured Londoners 24/7 by providing life-saving medical procedures on scene when minutes are vital to a person’s survival. We serve the 10 million people who live, work and commute within the Capital.

We are currently looking for: Charity Number 213128

The Queen’s Nursing Institute is dedicated to improving the nursing care of people in their own homes. Gifts in Wills are vital to help us improve the care you receive at home.

For more information, please call 020 7549 1400 or visit . Help us today to help you tomorrow.

• Drivers • Community ambassadors • Collection box coordinators

What we offer:

• Flexiblity • Reasonable travel expenses • Full training and support For more information, please contact Kirsty Whipp on 020 7943 1302 or email RETIREMENT



Charity N E W S Celebrating a brighter future for young apprentice 2010 winner Marmite ©JCPA

Nominate your magnificent moggies for the Feline Oscars! The search is on for the UK’s favourite feline with Cats Protection’s National Cat Awards 2012. Designed to celebrate real life stories of companionship, bravery and heroism in the cat world there are four main categories: • Hero Cat – Cats that save the day! • Best Friends – Where best feline friends have radically improved the quality of human life. • Most Incredible Story – Belief-defying, true stories from the cat world. • Outstanding Rescue Cat – Fabulous felines adopted from animal welfare organisations. The competition is open to all living cats in the UK and owners have until 31 May 2012 to enter their cat’s story. Winners will be announced by celebrity judges at a glamorous awards ceremony in London in August. To enter your cat’s story, please visit or email uk to request an entry form. Alternatively you can call the helpline on 03000 12 12 12 and select option five. A new Celebrity Cat category has also been added to recognise superstar cats in the public eye. To nominate a Celebrity Cat please post your suggestion on Cats Protection’s facebook page at www. referencing the National Cat Awards.

Two Hundred Years Old The National Benevolent Charity, one of the oldest charities in the country, is 200 years old. The charity was founded in 1812 by Peter Hervé, a painter of miniature portraits, who was of Huguenot descent. He started committees of the charity in Bristol and Bath, before starting a committee in London which soon became the national charity. Peter Hervé wanted to help people, particularly older people, who had fallen onto hard times through no fault of their own and who were at risk of having to go the dreaded workhouse. The charity gave a regular weekly pensions to thousands of elderly men and widows, too ill or too frail to work any longer. Today, the charity still helps people who cannot work because of age, illness or disability. This may be a small pension to add to the very basic sickness or disability benefit paid by the state, or it may be help with some bigger item of expenditure, such as the repair of a hot water boiler, or a much needed new cooker. There are no workhouses today, thank goodness. But there are still many people living in poverty who need a helping hand.

Kibble Education and Care Centre, a leading provider of child and youth care, is celebrating as another young person embarks on a promising career. Kibble provides marginalised young people with the skills and opportunities to participate fully in society and as part of this mission, offers training and employment services to unemployed young people. After several months on Kibble’s employment training programme, KibbleWorks, Danielle Cowan, 20, won an apprenticeship as a spray painter with leading car manufacturer, Audi. Danielle, from Renfrewshire, said: “I was signing on and then I got the chance to work at the vehicle mechanics business at KibbleWorks. If it wasn’t for Kibble, I wouldn’t have got this apprenticeship at Audi.” Danielle added: “Words couldn’t describe how I felt when I got this job - I’d never wanted something so bad as a job and now I’ve got one, it has changed my life.” KibbleWorks is based on an innovative social enterprise model that gives young people experience in industries like welding, catering and vehicle maintenance. Kibble’s chief executive, Graham Bell, said: “Danielle’s story is proof that society profits with social enterprise. “Without initiatives like KibbleWorks, young people like Danielle would miss out on employment training opportunities that played a major role in her landing that apprenticeship with Audi.” For more information on this and Kibble’s other services including residential services, day services and intensive fostering, visit

Free get fit phone groups launched Charity News

A unique and innovative approach for getting older people to live healthier lives has been launched in England. As part of Age UK’s fit as a fiddle programme, Community Network – the UK’s only telephone befriending charity – is encouraging older people to get fit by linking them up in telephone friendship groups where the benefits of physical exercise and healthy eating will be promoted.


Addressing these aspects of health and fitness in the group environment will build confidence and restore motivation among the group members, which in turn will give them the self-belief to take part in activities in their local area, either as a group, in pairs or as individuals. The project is open to anyone over 65 years old but can be particularly beneficial for people living alone who might enjoy linking up with others to share the experience of discovering a healthier lifestyle. Groups will be facilitated by volunteers over the age of 50. Each telephone group will link up once a week for an hour over a period of six weeks. All phone calls are free to those taking part. Please call Elizabeth on 020 7923 5251 or e-mail RETIREMENT



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ANNUITY AWARENESS CAMPAIGN The fourth and final article in the Grey Hairs ‘Annuity Awareness Campaign’ analyses the results given when using the Money Advice Service consumer tables ( Buying an annuity at retirement means that you convert your pension fund into an income paid for the rest of your life. Your pension provider will normally supply a quotation for a lifetime annuity but you should always try to shop around to find out which rates or products are on offer from other providers (this is called an ‘open market option’). The lifetime annuity table below shows ‘open market option’ annuities.

COMPARING RETIREMENT INCOME TABLES: These tables are designed to compare similar products available from various pension providers and their results are based on the features and options you have chosen to be included in your lifetime annuity product. They do not recommend which product you should buy and cannot give specific financial advice as to whether something is suitable for you or not.

By Robert Grey, Pensions Specialist

SEARCH SUMMARY: The Grey Hairs example search compares what is available on the open market for a joint-life annuity with a 5-year guarantee period for a 65 year-old man (Mr G) with a pension fund of £25,000. Mr G has a 60-year old wife who will receive 50% of his income on his death (for the rest of her lifetime). He has decided not to take a tax-free cash lump sum. Mr G smokes and has also declared his postcode. The results are sorted by pension provider name (first name alphabetically) and assume that Mr G’s annuity income will be paid monthly in advance.

NB The information contained in these tables is as accurate and up to date as possible. However, they are not intended to show everything you might want to know so you should always check the product details with the relevant pension provider or an independent financial adviser before making a final decision as to what to buy. Annuity rates can change quickly and the figures below are estimates and not guaranteed. Always contact your chosen provider for a formal annuity quotation. Although the provider names in this table are purely fictitious, the figures quoted are realistic income amounts based on the search summary (available in early April 2012). An explanation of each of the columns in the table is given below.



Andy Warhol


Monthly Income Level

Increasing (3%)

Enhanced/Impaired Restricted availability Increasing (RPI)

£100 £64




Claude Monet All






Edgar Degas







Leonardo Da Vinci


Pablo Picasso

Smokers only






Paul Gauguin







Pierre Renoir







Salvador Dali


£115 £79








Vincent Van Gogh All


Column Explanation Provider

Companies that provide annuities. The table shows those pension providers who offer annuities on the open market. Some may only offer annuities to existing customers and not under the ‘open market option’ and so are not shown in these tables.


‘All’ means that the annuity income shown is available to everyone (unless the annuity provider lists a restriction). ‘Smoker’, however, indicates that the income shown is only available to smokers [there is no standard definition of a ‘smoker’ and different companies may use different criteria].

Monthly Income (level)

This column shows the monthly annuity income for a level annuity. This income is fixed for life and will never increase.

Grey Hairs

Monthly Income (increasing by 3%) This column shows the monthly income in the first year for an annuity that increases by 3% each year.


Monthly Income (increasing by RPI) This column shows the monthly income in the first year for an annuity that increases in line with the Retail Prices Index (RPI) each year. If RPI falls below zero at any time, it is possible that your annuity income can fall. Enhanced/Impaired

Some providers will pay a higher annuity income than that shown in the table if you meet certain conditions based on your lifestyle or a previous hazardous occupation (enhanced annuities) or if you have certain illnesses or medical problems that are likely to shorten your life expectancy (impaired life annuities).

Restricted availability

The annuity income shown in this row is restricted to certain groups of people. Any such restrictions will be detailed in the product summary for the annuity in question.



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Register online for FREE tickets! (worth £10 each) RETIREMENT



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Retirement Today May/June  
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A UK Magazine published since 1995 targeting the over 50's