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Pensioner reveals loneliness during radio show phone-in

11th November 2015

This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.

A 95-year-old pensioner from Southampton was recently invited into the BBC Radio Solent studio following a phone-in where he described his loneliness to the show’s presenter. Mr Palmer called the Alex Dyke show and told the story of how his wife had been moved to a nursing home where she now lives since being diagnosed with dementia.

Although he still visits his wife every day, he described the ordeal as “hell”, and said how he felt so alone now that his wife was no longer living with him. According to the BBC, Bill Palmer said: “"I listen to the radio and watch TV and have lots of friends, but unfortunately when you get old people don't visit - that's life."

Listeners phoned in to offer support and advice to Mr Palmer

Following his call to the show, the presenter ordered a taxi to bring the pensioner to the studio immediately, in order to get him to chat with other listeners.

The guest was said to have ‘touched the hearts of thousands of listeners’ and has hopefully inspired many to take some time to help lonely relatives, friends and neighbours. Since the show was aired, the recording of his call has been listened to more than 40,000 times, and has seen the pensioner inundated with offers such as a private concert from a ukulele orchestra.

Mr Palmer turned them all down, but showed his appreciation when he said: “I didn't know such kindness existed.” The presenter described Mr Palmer’s appearance on the show as the nicest moment of his 30 years of broadcasting.

If you would like to help a lonely older person, then why not take a look at our A-Z guide for ideas, such as assisting them to get involved with activities, or simply having Sunday lunch with them once a week.

Image Credit: James Cridland (flickr.com)