Lockdown loneliness prompts changing retirement plans

Forty-seven per cent of people who haven’t yet retired and experienced loneliness in lockdown are now reconsidering their later life plans, according to new research published by Audley Villages.

Over a third (35%) of people in the UK said they experienced greater feelings of loneliness through the first nationwide lockdown, with this particularly prominent amongst those aged between 18 and 34 (46%).

Audley Villages’ research, based on results among a study of 2,002 UK adults with 1,001 of those aged over 55, revealed that 46% of people are worried they will experience loneliness in the future, with local and national lockdowns as well as retirement weighing on the nation’s minds.

The retirement specialist suggested that many people are changing their plans for later life to actively avoid loneliness.

The findings showed that 26% of those who have experienced loneliness and have not retired plan to stay busy with activities and social groups when they get older, 17% want to ensure they are part of a strong community, 15% will move closer to family and 12% closer to friends, to have a strong support network close by.

“The pandemic has sadly given people a new appreciation of what it can feel like to be lonely,” commented Audley Villages, managing director – operations, Paul Morgan. “The key to minimising feelings of isolation is to create a strong support network.

“Friends, family and people that will check in, either virtually or in person, share hobbies or interests or join you for a walk can make a real difference both mentally and physically. We need to be creating housing options that support a sense of community as this is needed now more than ever. It has the potential to change the lives of people across the UK.”

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