The Actuarial Profession, Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London WC1V 7QJ, 16:00, 29 November 2011

A memorial lecture and debate on Centenarians and the Oldest Old

The ILC-UK was saddened last summer, by the loss of Dr. Robert N. Butler, founder of the first International Longevity Centre in the United States and Pulitzer prize-winning gerontologist. His invaluable contribution has changed the approach and research on ageing and longevity.

In tribute to Dr Butler, ILC-UK organised a memorial lecture and debate, in partnership with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation on Centenarians and the Oldest Old.

In 1911 there were just 100 Centenarians living in England and Wales, a figure which grew to 9,000 people in 2006 and represented a 90-fold increase over the previous 100 years (Dini and Goldring. 2008). There was a fourteen-fold increase in male centenarians and a 23-fold increase in female centenarians over the last 50 years of the twentieth century (Dini and Goldring. 2008).

The number of people aged over 100 is expected to nearly double between 2030 and 2035, when it is projected there will be 97,300 centenarians in the UK. It is then expected to more than double again during the next decade, to stand at 202,100 by 2045. (DWP/ONS December 2010).

The ONS estimates that by 2066 there will be at least 507,000 people in the UK aged 100 or over, including 7,700 super centenarians who are aged 110 or over. By 2080, there may be 626,900 people aged over 100. 21,000 of these will be over 110. (DWP/ONS December 2010).

Even the conservative estimates for the growth in the number of the oldest old will have a significant impact on services. Yet whilst policy makers seem aware of the growth in the number of people living to 100, there has been little or no explicit exploration about the impact of the growth in numbers of oldest old on public policy.

Professor Tom Kirkwood, Associate Dean for Ageing at Newcastle University gave the Lecture. The ILC-UK presented early findings of work for Age UK on the oldest old.

Agenda from the event:

16:30 – 16.35
Welcome and introduction from chair Baroness Sally Greengross, Chief Executive, International Longevity Centre – UK

16.35 – 17.20
The Robert Butler Memorial Lecture by Professor Tom Kirkwood, Associate Dean for Ageing at Newcastle University.

17.20 – 17.30
Centenarians and the Oldest Old, ILC-UK
David Sinclair

17.30 - 17.35
A personal contribution on the life of a Centenarian
Noreen Siba

17.35 – 17.45
First telegram at 110? The implications of longevity
Dr Matthew Norton

17.45 – 17.55
'What older people want and value in life?' Joseph Rowntree Foundation
Ilona Haslewood

17.55 – 18.25
Panel and Audience debate

Close and drinks

The slides from this event are available to view below.