Mary Kenny: dancing at 104!
The Arts Council in the North is a pioneer of creative projects for older people
More than 100 studies in America have shown that older people who have some involvement with the arts have improved wellbeing, better medical outcomes of care, and a reduced likelihood of depression.
And an extensive Norwegian study - involving 51,000 older people (of pensionable age) - showed that people had reduced stress levels and a prolonged active life if they had some connection with the arts.
Loneliness and social isolation in old age have a highly-deleterious effect on health: it can be as bad for people as smoking, and is worse than obesity. People need social involvement, which is all the better if it is creative and imaginative.