The French Hospital Almshouses’s 300th Anniversary conference to focus on UK housing for an ageing population

The French Hospital Almshouses announce a special housing conference to mark their 300th Anniversary as a charity. The conference Housing: exploring the way forward for an ageing population will take place on Wednesday, 21 March at the Wellcome Collection in London. The conference will feature speakers from across the housing spectrum, and Lord Best OBE DL, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Housing and Social Care for Older People, will deliver the keynote address.

According to the Office of National Statistics, the over 75 population is projected to double in the next 30 years. By 2040, nearly one in four people in the UK (24.2%) will be aged 65 or over. [1]

Housing in the UK does not meet the demands that are being placed on it, and is particularly ill-equipped to deal with the mounting pressures of an ageing population. The conference will be of particular interest to people working in the housing and social care sectors, as well as to individuals with an interest in exploring housing options for the ageing population.

The following speakers, from organisations working to improve housing and care options for the ageing population, will present at the event:

  • Alex Fox OBE, Homeshare UK
  • Peter Dowds, Elder
  • Barry Sweetbaum, SweetTree Home Care Services
  • Grahame Hindes, Octavia Housing Association
  • Lt. Col. Anthony De Ritter, Almshouse Association
  • Maria Brenton, UK Co-Housing Network & Older Women’s Co-housing Community
  • Stephen Burke, United for All Ages
  • Martin Shreeve, The ExtraCare Charitable Trust
  • Nick Sanderson, Audley Retirement Villages
  • Christine Valentine-Bunce, Chelsea Court Place
  • Jonathan Ellis, Hospice UK
  • Jeremy Porteus, Housing LIN

Ian Mackenzie, Clerk at The French Hospital Almshouses said: 

“This year, we wanted not only to celebrate our 300th Anniversary, but also to use this milestone to engage with others in a much wider debate about the housing challenges that our country is facing. We, along with many others, are keen to play a part in delivering solutions to those challenges. To do that, we need to understand them better and to have a broader knowledge of housing models that make provision for older people. We hope to achieve this by working with, and learning from, others who also seek to be a part of the solution.

Our conference will touch on a broad spectrum of housing options that exist, or are being developed. The aim is to give those attending a rich picture that will help them to identify their place in providing solutions, now and into the future. For this reason there are no breakout sessions at our conference – all those attending will be able to hear from all the speakers.”

“Tickets are £125pp and include refreshments and lunch. The deadline for registration is 6 March. For more information and to book, please visit:

[1]Age UK Later Life in the United Kingdom Factsheet December 2017