This is the beginning of the first GrumbleSmiles project examining the idea of Coventry as an Age Friendly City.  These are the results of our survey of our first group our “expert” explorers.    More results will be published in subsequent posts.

They comprised forty six older people who live in Coventry.  They were self-selected and so were not intended to be representative of the  true demographic of the 40,000+  older people living in Coventry.   By virtue of the fact that the events were held at the Technology Park, it seems reasonable to assume that the participants are likely to be more active, more connected and more computer literate, and also more healthy.

Preliminary comments on the graph results are entirely my own and will hopefully be further qualified by comments from the “expert” participants.

The age profile  of the participants is slanted toward the younger end of the  older people spectrum, probably because the location of the venue  was not easily accessible.  Therefore older less mobile people were under represented.

Footnote:-    We must be able to find the age profile  of Coventry’s older population.


A one third male / two thirds female split corresponds with experience elsewhere, especially for the younger age range in the profile.

Marital Status

Half the participants were married with a current partner.  However, half were single, which is probably a significant factor in terms of loneliness and isolation.

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5 Responses to CAFE survey — DEMOGRAPHICS

  1. Margaret Emerton says:

    It has been interesting and inspiring to be involved with such a group of very active retired people. I trust that the group input will result in positive outcomes for both the group and the wider ageing community.
    It would appear that one of the aspirations is to introduce a virtual community (internet based) and may I suggest that any further internet presentations are also interactive sessions for the participants. I expect we have all sat along side the ‘techie’ who say’s it’s easy just do this and that – they walk away any you go – WHAT!.
    Perhaps group members would bring in their own IPad, Tablet or Laptop to share internet access with others.

    • john graham says:

      Thank you for your early comment Margaret, it is a good idea which we will take up at the meeting on the 21st of June. We have a few computers we can bring along and hopefully other people can do the same as you. The welcome centre has Wi-Fi.

  2. Interesting reading!! I note one quotes 30,000 elderly people in Coventry, I wonder as a population of Coventry, what this number means? Is it for instance 55% of the Coventry City’s and its hinterland are over 55 years of age? Then one has to look at the younger generations! For instance is there a healthy employment scene and work ethic? Is Coventry screaming out for housing to encourage the younger person fill the work place vacancies? and with the passing of the older generations-do the younger generations have the neceesary work skills, and guidance in the workplace of Coventry: Which I still assumme is a skilled technological workplace?
    Alas if all the work place jobs and opertuinities have passed on gently with the elder generation, is there only wharehousing and Trading in shops or supermarkets left as the viable means od employment?
    I ask these questions not to be derogatory, but to be informed, as my own town Milton Keynes, has possibily the same problems, and the burgers of MK appear to invest heavily in immigration, and many younger workers live outside the MK boudries (I suspect- and commute for maybe upto 1 hour to find the work? Plus we have good transport connections and are a domitory town for LOndon and the SE in general?)
    What this has to do with Coventry and your elderly population one may ask? I am watching the media, and especially the financial pages, and the underlying problems with ‘Interst Only Mortgages’, with attached insurance with profits schemes and those alleged guarenteed returns by the so called government figures that had to be quoted. I now ask if this moving population to old age especially over 55 but not yet 75 (Unless one has remortgaged to finance family problems), what is the financial picture for all those quoted in the demographics survey, conducted in Coventry at the Cafe?
    Does one have to face the facts that maybe, one at some stage in their life once retired has to work to suppliment their personal income/Rely on savings, or the social services provided by the local council or local health service? In fact with the up and coming demographics can we as a society expect all things to be delivered on a plate? and can we still be socially(Political Beliefs) be motivated and think here of not only ourselves but our neighbours. I think one firstly has to look at ones own environment, and then ones own beliefs, and one has to some extent accept what life has dealt, with respect to ones own surrounds.
    If the cafe are looking at the future, and asking the older generation what they may wish in later life, they must have mobility of mind, freedom from social distinctions and the ethic to help themseves and and in doing so help help thier neighbour.
    Do take and intrest in the policical scene, not neccessarily the political dogma, but use ones vote as one may wish! Things may change as one retires and enters old age, and remember we as the older persons depend not only on each other, but the younger generations to keeps us. Ed Balls suggested Cap on State Pensions, is but the first hole in a leaking ship? Bite back, but with compassion and resoned argument.

  3. Re Demographics
    The Office for National Statistics is a great source of information on demographics – the number of older people (that is those 55+) in Coventry is estimated to be 75,900. If we break that down further then we have 39% aged 55-64 (30,200), 31% aged 65-74 (23,600) and 29% aged 75 and above.
    So the group that we have attending the sessions as part of the Grumblesmiles project are considered as ‘the younger old’!

    • john graham says:

      Thanks for the more comprehensive figures Christine. Perhaps the most significant figure is the bulge in the numbers who are approaching retirement age. This represents an even bigger challenge for the City in the years ahead.

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