RESEARCH conducted by a care home comparison site has revealed that the over 65s are feeling lonelier than ever.

Andrew Parfery, CEO and founder of Care Sourcer, has given advice to help tackle loneliness in communities following the research.

"The stark data from Care Sourcer’s survey couldn’t be clearer - over-65s in the UK are feeling more isolated and lonelier than ever during COVID-19,” he said.

“Wherever you live in the UK, there are lonely older people in your area, town and probably on your street. It’s up to all of us to step up and think creatively about how we can reach out to them in a safe way.

“If you are unable to see your loved ones in person, technology is your friend. Pick up the phone or FaceTime older friends and family - there is no time limit on this and it is a wonderful way to see multiple people at once.

"You don’t have to use tech though. There are lots of pen pal schemes in place across the country. Pen pal schemes became very popular during the first lockdown with school children writing to the elderly in their area.

"If you are interested, you can visit your local care home’s website to see what schemes they have in place. There are also opportunities to become a telephone friend to an older person. You may get a lot out of it too!

"You are still able to provide unpaid care for a friend or family member if needed, and some people may be able to form a support bubble with a loved one who lives by themselves.

“When doing so, it is still important to adhere to the government guidance and ensure everybody stays safe.”