Five members of Seaham Harbour U3A are involved in this research and development project. Our initial idea was recognised by Newcastle University when we were awarded third prize in a regional competition.

We are aware of the value of lifelong learning especially where mental and physical wellbeing is concerned in later years. With this in mind the first stage of our project was to carry out in-house research. This enabled us to ascertain members perceptions as to the advantages of being actively involved in the wide ranging opportunities on offer through U3A (data available). The results were exceedingly positive and are being used to inform future planning.

The second stage is to broaden our research by meeting some of the Gerlingen residents from our twin town in Germany. This is due to take place in April 2015 in Seaham.  The intention is to begin to share ideas/approaches from both towns. We hope to make a reciprocal visit to Gerlingen in the autumn.

Working together and sharing approaches across two countries has the potential for an exciting venture for those in their third age.


Sandra Wilkinson.