About Us

Swindon Serniors Forum (SSF) is a community organization that promotes the welfare and interests of older people within the Borough of Swindon and at the same time maintain independence from external influence.

We are run by a management committee of elected volunteers and provide opportunities for encouraging older people to have their say and exert influence on issues that concern them. We aim to keep you informed of our work and updated on all local and national issues that might impact on your life.

More about the Forum

The Forum was founded in November 2011 by the late David Brown and Carol Brownlee (read more here) and has continued to grow ever since (read the feature in the Swindon Advertiser). Our most recent achievements include the first Swindon summit on loneliness and the promotional video which we made with Swindon Viewpoint Community Media to raise awareness of the extent and effect of loneliness. Your input is valuable and we look forward to hearing  from you about the issues that matter to you most.

benefits of joining us
Meet new people and make new friends at our bi-annual open meetings.
Meet the decision makers and get the latest information on matters of concern to you, including benefits and health & safety.
Participate in improving how we deliver our service. For example through joining our Management Committee or getting involved with the website.
Swindon Loneliness Summit Follow-Up
(a non-public event)

Friday, 20 April 2018
(13:00 to 15:00)
Lawn Community Centre, Guildford Avenue, Swindon, Wiltshire SN3 1JL

Please note: Due to the specialized nature of the discussions involved, this is not a public event and attendance is by invitation only.

Loneliness can be felt by people of all ages, but as we get older, risk factors which could lead to loneliness begin to increase and converge. The impact of loneliness can be devastating and costly to society as well as to the individual.

As part of a local campaign to tackle loneliness, we have organised a follow-up event to our Loneliness Summit in order to bring together key local organisations from different sectors to discuss what changes have been made since our last event and what more can be done.

Note: The office of Robert Buckland MP circulated an email regarding some invitations not reaching their intended invitees due to technical difficulties with the app. If you did not receive the invitation by now, please check your spam folder or contact wolfr@parliament.uk to request your invitation.

Learn Direct

Swindon Over 50s Course Timetable - March 18

Start-End Title Level Days
26 Feb-1 Mar Preparing to Work in the Digital World IT basics/refresher course 4
5-8 Mar Customer Service C&G Entry Level 3 4
12-15 Mar Employability C&G Level 1 4
19-22 Mar Personal & Social Skills C&G Level 1 4
26-29 Mar Preparing to Work in the Digital World IT basics/refresher course 4

For further information visit Learn Direct Website or contact:
Laurie Wills (Referrals Coordinator)
Email: laurie.wills@learndirect.com
Mobile: 07393 789584

Reducing social isolation among patients in their 60s was comparable to the benefits of giving up smoking and greater than the benefits of reducing obesity and physical inactivity - read more in our Magazine


Essential Information
for individuals and organizations

The website of the Campaign to End Loneliness contains valuable information for individuals and organizations who seek to make a difference. Your work to reduce loneliness in your area can benefit from the Campaign's assistance to help you raise awareness of the health risks of loneliness in your local area and to lobby those who control government and NHS spending to ensure that they find ways to address loneliness. Read more about the Campaign to End Loneliness and how individuals as well as organizations can benefit from their Ambassdor and other programmes.

Useful Numbers

Service Description Telephone
Adult Social Care and support for older people in Swindon. 0800 085 6666
Adult social care (SBC)
Age UK Swindon (advice and information). 01793 687017 Age UK Swindon
Age UK Wiltshire line open
Monday - Thursday: 9am to 4pm
Friday: 9am to 1pm.
Tel: 01380 727 767
Website: www.ageuk.org.uk
Age UK Wiltshire
CAB offer advice to residents of Swindon Borough Get advice online or over the phone or in person at three different centres: Main Office in town, East and North Swindon. Tel: 08444 994 114 (advice line)
Tel: 01793 618781
Email online
Swindon Citizens Advice (CAB)
Care & support information and advice from SBC. Website: www.mycaremysupport.co.uk/ My Care My Support (SBC)
Carers Centre: a charitable organisation that provides help and support to the 21,000 carers in Swindon. Tel: 01793 531133
Email: carers@swindoncarers.org.uk
Website: www.swindoncarers.org.uk
Swindon Carers Centre
Community Nursing: Care at home or residential homes for patients with long-term conditions or disabilities. Tel: 01793 463333
(choose option 4)
Community Nursing at GWH
Equality in Swindon: the Coalition is a network of groups and people who seek to make equality reality in Swindon. Tel: 01793 538398(VAS)
Tel: 01793 466515 (SBC)
email: Chair info@vas-swindon.org (for VAS)
equalitycoalition@swindon.gov.uk (for SBC)
Swindon Equality Coalition
Health Walks in Swindon - locate a walk near you. Find a walk near you at:
Swindon Health Walks
Healthwatch Swindon ensures that public views on local health and social care services are heard. Tel: 01793 497777
Online Email:
Address:Sanford House, Sanford Street
Healthwatch Swindon
Police in emergency and non-emergency. Tel: 101 (non-emergency)
Tel: 999 (emergency only)
Website: www.wiltshire.police.uk
Wiltshire police
Questions about your health or a health service? Call 111.
NHS Direct was dissolved in March 2014.
Tel: 111 NHS Direct (no longer operational in England)
Users Network A user-led organisation formed by people who use health and social services. Promotes user involvement and supports people to have a voice. Tel: 01380 871800
Tel: 01380 871057
Email: info.wsun@btconnect.com
Website: wsun.co.uk
Wiltshire and Swindon Users Network (WSUN)
Voluntary Action Swindon is a charity that helps other charities in the local voluntary and community sector. Tel: 01793 538398
Email: info@vas-swindon.org
Voluntary Action Swindon (VAS)
For a more comprehensive list of useful contacts visit this page.

Local Places to Go

Gorse Hill Baptist Church

Lunch Club

Gorse Hill Baptist Church has a Lunch Club on Tuesdays where a low-cost and nutritious meal is provided, together with the benefit of friendship with other members, and the occasional longer session lasting several hours where crafts or performances may be part of the event. Prior booking is necessary. Interested people can phone the GHBC number 01793 534193, and leave a message if no-one is in the office.

ReCreate Arts & Crafts

The occasional "ReCreate Arts & Crafts" event at Gorse Hill Baptist Church is for all ages, "4 to 104". The Christmas event is on Saturday 25th November from 10.30am to 1.00pm. There are lots of crafts to do, and a simple lunch at the end. While most of the attendees are parents and children, seniors would be very welcome. Teas and coffees are also available, and if a visitor wants a few minutes' quiet, they can always sit in the church area and enjoy watching a slideshow on the screen. This is always a free event. GHBC website (for future dates) is www.ghbc.org.uk

Other various activities

On most other Saturdays, Gorse Hill Baptist Church has "Kettle's on", a tea-coffee-and-hot-chocolate drop-in event, from 10.30am to 12.00noon. Please note also that the same foyer houses the Gorse Hill collection of books from Swindon Library, operated on a sign-out honesty book basis. There are lots of books on gardening and cookery etc., plus loads of fiction! The library collection can be accessed whenever the church is open. Please ring 01793 534193 for information, leaving a message if necessary.

Contact and Events

Visit this link for details of how to contact Gorse Hill Baptist Church and the latest upcoming event.

advice for the elderly

Age UK Advice is a free, confidential, national phone service for older people, their families, friends, carers and professionals. Age UK have a team of expert advisers who will give you information that is reliable and up-to-date. If Age UK are unable to help, they will direct you to the best place to go for further support and advice.

Loneliness News

Theresa May appoints minister for loneliness
after Jo Cox Commission highlight Britain's epidemic

On 17 January 2018 the Government set out how it intends to tackle loneliness and combat social isolation, accepting a series of recommendations from the Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness. The first steps include appointing a ministerial lead on loneliness


The Minister for Sport and Civil Society Tracey Crouch will lead a cross-government group which will take responsibility for driving action on loneliness across all parts of government and keeping it firmly on the agenda.
For more, and background, see this article in The Guardian.

See also: Reported earlier on this website


news & events

Our Chair Norma Thompson was present at the meeting between the Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, and NHS staff in Swindon to discuss additional pressures on the NHS during winter.

More cover by the Daily Mail
Swindon Viewpoint Community Media produced a promotional video for Swindon Seniors Forum for use at our events and on our website and concentrated on raising awareness of the extent and effect of loneliness.
The Chair’s Report to AGM 2017 outlines our most relevant activities and sets out future objectives ... read more

contact the ssf

Whether you are seeking information, wish to share your views or become a member
we look forward to hearing from you

by post

Norma Thompson
Swindon Seniors Forum
1 John Street
Swindon, SN1 1RT

Swindon Seniors Forum
a voice for Swindon’s over 55s

The SSF is a member of Age Action Alliance and is sponsored by AgeUK and Santander

Patron: Lord Joel Joffe, CBE

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Donors at Open Meetings