County’s men living longer
2:00pm Saturday 28th September 2013 in Latest News
Members of a seniors’ lunch club have raised a glass to news that life expectancy for men in Wiltshire has reached 80 for the first time, according the Annual Public Health Report for 2012/13.
Holt’s Luncheon Club has been running since 1979 and more than 30 people – the oldest being 99 – meet in the village hall each Wednesday, to socialise, enter raffles and have a two-course meal. Club treasurer Rowley Cantello, 86, of Station Road, said: “The social aspect of the club is vital. Occupation of the mind is very important. It is essential to keep the brain active.”
The retired decorator said he walked as much as he could and liked to keep his mind active with crosswords. Club member Alan Fox, 80, of The Common, said: “Thinking positively is the key. When you are older, you have to keep the brain cells moving. Getting involved in the community is vital, also.”
This week’s report noted life expectancy for women in Wiltshire is now 83.8 years. Both figures are better than England’s average of 78.9 for men and 82.9 for women. Club regular John Carey, 89, of Great Parks, was in the Navy for 32 years and said: “It is important to take an interest in everything that is happening, read a lot, talk to people, pay attention to family and keep active.”
Comparing his life to that of his parents’ generation, he added: “We have so many more opportunities to learn and travel and do things.”
The report also set out the priorities for the next year, including reducing the number of smokers, diagnosing cancer and other life-threatening diseases sooner, tackling alcohol and drug misuse, enabling people to live more active lifestyles, reducing obesity levels and improving mental health and wellbeing.
Cllr Keith Humphries, cabinet member for public health, said: “One of our priorities is to reduce the gap in life expectancy between the most and least deprived communities.”
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