Tooting hosts TV’s Ainsley Harriott for filming of BBC series on ageing

TV chef Ainsley Harriott’s visit to the Tooting Hestia Age Activity Centre is to air as part of a BBC documentary series on Wednesday morning.

The Hestia Age Activity Centre aims to help people aged 60 and over to stay active.

Wandsworth-born Harriott’s visit o will feature on Holding Back the Years at 9.15am on BBC One.

The 60-year-old also made quite the impression at the centre by singing and dancing with some of the members.

Eric Smellie, who has been involved with both the age activity centre and Hestia’s Service User Involvement team since 2010, said: Ainsley definitely brought a smile to the faces of all those who met him and spent time with him.

He has a very kind and positive way about him – a true gentleman that we would welcome back with open arms.”

The five-part series has been airing since Monday this week, which looks into the experiences of growing older in Britain today.

Other 60 plus celebrities including Maureen Lipman, Arlene Philips, Bill Turnbull and Angela Rippon are also featuring.

Each episode sees a different celebrity exploring a particular aspect of getting old that interests and affects them most – from relationships and family to health and well-being, pensions and money.

The centre provides a range of activities such as dance classes and Tai Chi, as well as providing mind exercises such as chess and dominoes.

Hestia’s CEO Patrick Ryan said: “The Hestia Age Activity Centre is the jewel in the crown of our older people’s services at Hestia.

“It stands as the shining example of a place that provides for those people who might not have friends or family around to see them very often, enjoying the various games and activities provided as members of our centre do on a weekly basis.”

Hestia supports around 9,000 adults and children across London each year.

Featured image courtesy of Hestia, with thanks

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