The catchy new sing-along Goldies ‘anthem’ will be launched on Wednesday November 30 at the Houses of Parliament. It coincides with a three year academic study which has underlined the wellbeing value that the Goldies Charity brings to hundreds of older isolated people.
Paul (51) lives in Patchway, Bristol. He is a social care worker and for the last five years has been taking adults with severe disabilities to the daytime sing and smile sessions organised by ‘Goldies’, as it is now fondly known.
Back in the 90s Paul was a member of a duo called Secret Life. One of his songs, ‘So Strong’ hit the top 40 charts back then.
The Golden-Oldies Charity was started by Bath music man Grenville Jones in November 2006. A respected choir leader across the West Country, Grenville had seen for himself the friendships and joy that came from belonging to a music group. The first four daytime Goldies sessions were taken by Grenville and now, 10 years later in 2016, there are over 150 across England and Wales, with the sessions led by 40 dedicated freelance leaders.
They take place across South West England and South Wales, in Essex, the Midlands and Yorkshire. Grenville is always anxious to point out that Goldies is certainly not a choir but music and singing is at the heart of all it does. His hopes are for Goldies to reach out to older people across the UK in the years ahead, as Goldies UK.
The idea of a Goldies song came to Paul as he was driving to London from Bristol four years ago.
“I had been thinking for a long time that it would be great to try and come up with a new song that could be sung at all the Goldies sessions and perhaps become a regular Goldies sing-along tune. The words for the chorus started to buzz in my head and all of a sudden the melody and the rhythm came to me!
“Goldies is a wonderful charity, one of the ladies that I care for has been attending the sessions for a number of years and I have noticed a transformation in her personality and her confidence through attending Goldies. It really is the Sing and Smile charity,” says Paul.
Goldies Patron is Sir Cliff Richard. He said;
“I hope everyone enjoys our new Goldies Song. Paul Bryant has seen for himself the joy and the positive difference that a Goldies session can bring to the lives of vulnerable older people’s lives, who regularly attend across England and Wales. In 10 years ‘Goldies’ has really made quite remarkable progress.”
The easy to sing new Goldies song will be launched at the Houses of Parliament on Wednesday November 30. The visit will be hosted by a number of MPs who support the work of the charity in their various constituencies and led by Ben Howlett Member of Parliament for Bath. Forty older folk who attend Goldies sessions across England and Wales will travel to London where they will be welcomed by their local MPs, enjoy lunch and then perform the Goldies song with Paul Bryant in the Jubilee Room on TV.
The older folk travelling to London will come from Barry and Rhydepennau in South Wales, Uttoxeter and Burton Upon Trent in Staffordshire, South Gloucestershire, Swindon, Keynsham and Bath.
Goldies founder Grenville Jones said;
“When Paul first played the song to me I knew it was a winner. It is easy to sing with a catchy chorus and we hope that all Goldies sessions in the future will start with it. Our charity works with the University of Bath and their Department for Health and specifically with Dr Afroditi Stathi, a Trustee of our charity.
“A number of the popular songs that are sung at Goldies sessions have specifically designed movements and working with Dr Stathi’s team the new Goldies song will also have its own moves!”
The Goldies song is now on YouTube and on iTunes – https://youtu.be/SVCHDKbbqRc
Paul Marshall from the University of Bristol undertook the research study. He says;
“The study worked with the Goldies Cymru programme that reaches diverse urban and rural communities in South Wales, this evaluation enabled participants to have their voice and influence their daytime sessions and how the charity is run. Regular attendance directly reduces social isolation of older people in South Wales.
“The evidence from this evaluation clearly suggests that Goldies Cymru is making a significant contribution to reducing the incidence and providence of social isolation and loneliness amongst the older people population.”
Press enquiries, please contact
Paul Bryant on 07855 922651
Grenville Jones on 07778 282934
Golden-Oldies Charity notes….
Golden-Oldies (Goldies), is a social initiative, bringing positive change to marginalised vulnerable people in England and Wales through structured daytime social singing and activity
sessions that encourage participation and functional exercises. The registered Charity was founded by Grenville in September 2007 with just four singing sessions for older people in sheltered housing schemes in Bath taken by himself.
Singing the popular hits of the 50s onwards people are encouraged to dance, sing and relax with a cup of tea and a chat with their session leader and other participants.
There are now 150 session across England and Wales (Goldies Cymru), taken by over 40 dedicated leaders. Sir Cliff Richard is Patron.
Goldies is NOT a choir and the sessions are based on memory-evoking songs of the 50s and onwards. They are attended by older people and adults with learning difficulties and disabilities such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Through its diverse communities programme Goldies run sessions for Afro Caribbean elders, South Asian older people and senior people from the Chinese community.
The sessions, an intergenerational schools programmes and additional open community events give people who live in isolation a REASON to get out, make friends and take a more
active part in community life. For many attending is one of the few times to enjoy the company of others, to SING and to SMILE.