A 10-day old baby and 100-year-old lady were the oldest and youngest participants to take part in Chester’s first intergenerational sing along at The Hammond School on Saturday 27th April.

Across two events, 70 residents and staff from Chester care homes, and 200 audience members – including the Lord Mayor of Chester – took part in the hour-long, interactive singing session to mark Global Intergenerational Week. 

Conducted by Amanda Wrigley, owner of Tarporley-based Live the Beat, who was assisted by Sue Egerdorff and Liz Luddon, founders of Ready Generations, and Hollie McDiarmid of Healthbox CIC and Fountains Medical Practice; the event was the first in what is hoped will be a yearly experience for Chester’s youngest and oldest residents to come together and sing in an intergenerational choir.

“It was a joy to see all the ages coming together to sing and smile as we celebrated the wonder of music,” said Amanda. “The feedback we’ve had from those who attended has been just amazing and we’re now hoping we can make this an annual event.”

Since first creating intergenerational singing experiences in care homes in 2019, Amanda has had a front-row seat to witness the profound effect her sessions have on participants: “Carers tell me how they can see their residents ‘unfurl’ and come to life when the music starts, and I see for myself how they become more playful and confident throughout the session. 

“For the younger members of our groups they are forced out of their comfort zone, enjoying the company of people they wouldn’t normally spend time with, and as the weeks pass, forming relationships with their ‘grandfriends’.”