More than a million older people in the UK regularly go an entire month without speaking to anyone, according to Age Cymru.

A church in Newtown is putting on an event to help alleviate loneliness among older people.

Newtown Evangelical Church, on Llanidloes Road, is running a ‘Holiday at Home’ event this Summer with a range of activities for over-60s.

At last summer’s event, Lavinia Morris, 82, walked in to find an old schoolfriend who she had not seen for years.

“We had a real good chat, it was lovely to see her. We were in the same class together at Kington Secondary School and I have fond memories of her. We reminisced about the old days!

“I recommend anyone to come. There is card making, painting and arts and crafts, keep fit class, it’s grand!”

Lavinia says the event has made a difference to people who might feel lonely.

“When you’re living alone, time goes longer. Holiday at Home is very social, and it’s a chance to meet with people you might not necessarily come across.

“You’re free to do what you like, and you’re not tied to do all the activities. Some folk prefer to do something quietly with a cup of tea.”

Linda Ward, event organiser, said: “We realised just how many lonely older people there are in and around Newtown, often stuck at home, without the means to get away; either because they can’t afford it, don’t have the mobility or just don’t like the thought of trying to manage a holiday on their own.

“We want to offer them the chance to have a holiday experience that combines good food, good company, a variety of activities, and is affordable.”

“Many people told us last year that one of the greatest joys was just to come and be in a warm and welcoming environment, where they could feel ‘at home’, chat to friends, renew old friendships and make new ones.

“We want to encourage folk to think of any relatives, friends or neighbours who are over 60, and might really benefit from coming along.”

Holiday at Home runs for a week from July 24 to 27 and includes a day-trip by coach to the seaside and a concert to finish off the week. For more information, please contact the church on 01686 624 343.