Retirees in Scotland are living life to the full!

Retired people in Scotland are not relaxing at home with their feet up, they are busier than when they were working, according to new research. Pic: Jon Savage

Retired people in Scotland are not relaxing at home with their feet up, they are busier than when they were working, according to new research. Pic: Jon Savage

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Far from relaxing at home, retirees in Scotland are showing no signs of slowing down in their twilight years according to new research.

Findings from Royal Voluntary Service, an older people’s charity, show almost half of retirees (42 per cent) in Scotland are busier now than when they were working full time.

The research, released as the UK celebrates Older People’s Day, reveals how retirees are living life to the full.

Three fifths (59 per cent) say their week is always busy and 41 per cent say they have more enthusiasm to learn new things now they’re retired.

Volunteering is a popular pastime with over a quarter (26 per cent) of retired people in Scotland saying they volunteer.

This trend is reflected in the number of over 60s volunteering for the charity as over 66 per cent of its volunteers (22,951) are over 60 themselves.

Previous research from Royal Voluntary Service has identified the health benefits of older people volunteering. The research by Professor James Nazroo found older people who volunteer are less depressed, have a better quality of life and are happier with their lives.

Meanwhile, others over 60 say retirement is a time for hobbies, with 74 per cent of people saying they have more time for new interests and 83 per cent claiming they fill their week with hobbies.

David McCullough, chief executive, Royal Voluntary Service, said: “Many people may believe that retirement is an opportunity to sit back and relax, but on the contrary; thousands of older people are committed to helping as many people as they can, making a huge difference to the lives of others in their communities.

“A large percentage of our volunteers are over 60 themselves and we could not provide the support we do without their help.

“We know that keeping busy when you retire is essential and can have a direct impact on people’s wellbeing, from their general quality of life, through to how satisfied they are with their lives and also on reducing symptoms of depression.”

Royal Voluntary Service supports thousands of older people each month to stay independent in their own homes for longer with tailor made solutions.

Through its army of volunteers, the charity runs services such as good neighbours (companionship), social transport, lunch and social clubs, memories projects and home library services.

Royal Voluntary Service also provides practical support for older people who are in hospital through its on ward support services, network of retail shops and cafes as well as helping reduce delayed Discharges through its home from hospital support services.

For more information on volunteer opportunities with Royal Voluntary Service, please visit www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk