The story of CHAIN 1977 -2012

by Ron Rowlands

Survey of over 60s   –   1983

By year six (1983) the management committee is still endeavouring to increase its community activities and is helped by Angela Kingsbury organising a survey of over sixty year olds in Hungerford. The Survey is comprehensive and was carried out well.  A report was completed in June 1983 and a copy is in the CHAIN office and in the Town Archives.  In a note to the management committee when she submitted her report Angela wrote:-

‘A magnificent effort by at least 40 CHAIN persons has resulted in the identification of some two thirds of the over 60 population in the town.  These were marked off on the Electoral Roll and every fifth name was selected to provide a random sample to survey with a questionnaire.  117 questionnaires have been sent out, 88 questionnaires have so far been returned and these have resulted in 74 completed interviews.  There are still interviews to be completed but we hope to wind up the survey at the end of this week.

 On the basis of the questionnaires completed so far and with the aid of an age/sex profile of Hungerford 1981 census I estimate that the total number of people expressing an interest in a lunch club would be likely to be in the region of 225 persons.  There are some 900 over 60s living in private households; those living in sheltered accommodation were excluded from the survey.  However it should be noted that this total (225) breaks up into two groups – those interested in ‘lunch in a local hotel with a speaker’ and those interested in lunch in a local hall.  No-one felt that lunch in a neighbour’s house was appropriate.  Rather more men than women were interested by the hotel venue and vice-versa for the hall.  Some of those who preferred the idea of a hotel lunch would be prepared to consider lunch in a hall but those who selected the hall as a venue did not want lunch in a hotel.  Interested persons, as you might expect, fell largely into the 65-75 age group for men and 60 to 75 for women.

 Only one person selecting a hotel lunch might have been unable to walk there but the proportion was much higher for those wanting lunch in a hall and might amount to as much as half requiring assistance with transport.  Those selecting lunch in a hotel were all prepared to pay over £2 and the majority agreed £3 to £5 would be more appropriate. The majority in each case felt that once a month would be as often as they would require a lunch club.  People considering a hall lunch were prepared to pay up to £2 but at least half thought in terms of under £1.  The majority in both groups felt that 12.30 to 1.30pm was the best time to hold a lunch club. Estimated numbers of people who might be interested in a lunch club in Hungerford.

Hotel Hall Don’t know Total

Male   55   45       – 100
Female   47   67    10 124

Totals 102 112    10 224

Note that given a choice between a – tea club / whist drive / weekly drive / lunch club or bingo – more would choose a weekly drive in the country than a lunch club.

Angela Kingsbury   20-4-1983