When I'm 65 is a challenging new BBC One primetime season set to tackle a subject that affects everyone: ageing.
It’s an inescapable fact, everyone grows old. The over 65s are the fastest growing age group in Britain and by 2030 it’s estimated that a quarter of the population will be over the age of 65.
Confronting the issues facing the elderly has become one of the UK’s biggest priorities and some of Britain’s most familiar faces from television are getting involved. In July, a mix of personalities and Britain’s elderly will address a range of issues, taking on everything from working past the age of retirement to what it’s like to live in a care home.
Danny Cohen, Controller, BBC One: “When I’m 65 brings together a range of powerful and thought-provoking programmes that explore the reality of life for many older people, and the choices they face. Thought-provoking seasons anchored in primetime are something I would like to have more of on BBC One, and the theme of our ageing population and the lives of older citizens is clearly a pressing one. I hope this cluster of programmes resonates with all BBC One viewers, no matter how old they are.”
Nick Hewer, 68, and Margaret Mountford, 60, of The Apprentice fame are reunited in The Town That Never Retired where they follow 15 retired pensioners heading back to work.
In When I Get Older broadcaster Gloria Hunniford, 71; actor Lesley Joseph, 69; actor and historian Tony Robinson, 65; and BBC World Affairs Editor John Simpson, 67, immerse themselves in the lives of pensioners and care homes.
In June Brown: Respect Your Elders EastEnders actress June Brown, 85, issues a rousing rallying cry for more respect for the elderly while How To Live Beyond 100 uncovers unique pearls of wisdom from the nation’s centenarians.
The Town That Never Retired
Today’s newborns are going to have to work until they’re 77. But could anyone actually cope with working so long and should they have to? To find out Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford launch a bold experiment where they send 15 retirees in their 70s back to full time work. The pair uncovers some startling truths as the pensioners head back to work on a construction site, a chocolate factory, an Italian restaurant, a health clinic and an estate agent. Both Nick and Margaret are keen to find out if these OAPs still have what it takes, competing against younger employees and their colleagues preconceptions about the elderly. How will their bosses, fellow workers and the public react to a more mature workforce?
When I Get Older
John Simpson, Gloria Hunniford, Lesley Joseph and Tony Robinson leave their comfort and busy lives to experience an old age a world away from their own. They each move in with a pensioner experiencing one of the toughest problems facing senior citizens in the UK.
John is confronted with the harsh realities of loneliness as he spends time with an isolated pensioner, while Lesley experiences the pain of caring for someone you love when she lives with a couple struggling with the impact of ill-health.
Gloria spends time with a grandmother dealing with the grind of poverty while Tony is faced with the anguish of a pensioner's bereavement.
In the second programme, the four famous pensioners face up to a life they all fear when they move into care homes and live alongside elderly people forced to rely on others to survive their final years.
June Brown: Respect Your Elders
June Brown believes that there is a distinct lack of respect for the elderly in the UK. June is concerned that there is a real disconnect between the old and the young and this could lead to the country betraying the generation that once made it great. June sets out to meet well-known faces and elderly people from all walks of life to find out how they really feel about society’s attitude towards growing old. As June explores thorny issues such as the rise of care homes due to the breakdown of the extended family, she confronts her own plans for how to grow old gracefully.
How To Live Beyond 100
What is it like to live 100? This programme meets centenarians across the country who explain what it means to have watched the world change around them; how their own attitudes, thoughts and feelings have changed through the years; and what it’s been like to age. A quarter of all children born today are expected to live beyond 100: this programme is an uplifting look at what it’s really like to live to 100 and beyond.
When I’m 65 will transmit on BBC One peak-time from early July. The BBC One season will be accompanied by interviews, radio phone-ins and features across the BBC including a series of in-depth features and discussions on You And Yours, the BBC Radio 4 consumer affairs programme.
The Town That Never Retired was commissioned by Danny Cohen, Controller, BBC One and Charlotte Moore, Commissioning Editor for Documentaries. The series will be exec produced by Daisy Goodwin and Robert Thirkell (series edited by Debs Colman) for Silver River and Maxine Watson for the BBC.
When I Get Older was commissioned by Danny Cohen, Controller, BBC One, Alison Kirkham, Commissioning Editor for Factual Formats and Features and Tom Edwards, Commissioning Executive. The series is executive produced by Elliot Reed for BBC Productions.
June Brown: Respect Your Elders was commissioned by Danny Cohen, Controller, BBC One and Charlotte Moore, Commissioning Editor for Documentaries. The film will be executive produced by Sarah Swingler and Simon Dickson for Dragonfly TV and Emma Willis for the BBC.
How To Live Beyond 100 was commissioned by Danny Cohen, Controller, BBC One and Charlotte Moore, Commissioning Editor for Documentaries. The film is executive produced by Michael Atwell for Map TV and Maxine Watson for the BBC.
When I'm 65 brings together a range of powerful and thought-provoking programmes that explore the reality of life for many older people, and the choices they face.”