Silver Workforce

Old man playing guitar uid 1273814

Hi there!

With an ageing population, do you ever think about older workers and how they fit into this current economic climate?  Well, this week we look at issues relating to older workers.

The Government commissioned a report by Dr Ros Altmann called, A new vision for older workers.  In it, she states,

An increasing number of employers, individuals and organisations understand both the challenges of an ageing population and the benefits of employing older workers.

With this in mind, Dr Altmann addresses these concerns with a great amount of detail for both employees and employers. As the Business Champion for Older Workers, Dr Altmann has left no stone unturned and has used her previous consumer campaigning and ministerial roles to lay out a thorough report.

The full document can be found in this downloadable pdf –…/a-new-vision-for-older-workers.pdf.

The National Careers Service is not just there for those of working age, it is for everyone and there is a section dedicated to the older members of the population who need help and support whether they want to work or learn new skills. The National Careers website says,

As an older worker, you will have a wealth of skills and experience at your fingertips. This section includes advice on making the most of that experience, whether you’re looking for a different job or want to learn something new.

They go on to say,

The Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful to discriminate against employees, job seekers and trainees because of age. For example, this may include because they are ‘younger’ or ‘older’ than a relevant and comparable employee.

Okay, so we know that older people make up part of the workforce. However, you may be surprised by the number of older people employed from the age of 65 to 69. Here are a few facts and figures:

In part-time employment 80% of the above age range of people work in Education, 74% are in hospitality, 75% are in health and social care and 72% are in public admin roles.

This contribution to the workforce may be due in part to The Equality Act and encouragement from campaigners like Age UK (

If you love statistics and have a few hours spare, have a look at the full pdf produced by the Government –…/older-workers-by-sector-ad-hoc-statistics.pdf.

These statistics along with all the documents available to download highlights the Government’s awareness of a need to address the many issues surrounding an ageing population and the impact this has in areas such as pensions.

Some older workers have no choice but to work while others want to do so, to socialise or to keep active.  More and more companies are seeing the benefits of an older workforce and even have apprenticeships with no upper age limit. The BBC have reported on a number of stories about older workers in the UK and further afield. One such report called The rise of the middle-aged intern, features some older Americans who have chosen to become interns in various fields   –

I think that this information is relevant to workers of all ages, as none of us know what situation we may find ourselves in as we get older.  It looks as though support for the older population in general, has increased. Hopefully, this will continue in order to allow more choice for what to do when approaching or during retirement.

Remember, we should all love what we do!

Take care,
































Old Blog, New Tricks – Part Two!

Hi there.

So last week I mentioned a couple of previous blogs that I felt deserved another outing; well today I will be looking back at the blog titled – Come on mistakes. See  

Now, before you report me to the grammar police for saying ‘come on’ mistakes, please read my blog, where all will be explained.

I don’t want to sound like a school teacher, but with so much help available at our fingertips, some errors really should not occur.

Of course, there will always be some technical grammatical errors and typos, and if I am honest, I make mistakes too. However, I am always trying to get everything I write – right! I think that some people have become so used to writing a certain way that they cannot be bothered to do anything about it. I am not trying to be a grammar snob. Speaking of which, have you seen this video?

I think that we should all be aware of our grammatical weaknesses and work on them. With help from the likes of Mignon Fogarty, aka Grammar Girl, or grammar etiquette from (who shared the cartoon above), they make this task a pleasure more than a chore! Why bother you ask?

Well, now remember this is only my opinion. I believe that writing is one way of getting your voice heard, so why not try to get that ‘voice’ heard as clear as possible.  We do this with the words that we use, and these words matter. I know, I know not everyone has time to think deeply about all of this, and I guess at the end of the day, it is whether you feel this is a priority.

I think it seems fitting to end with a Shakespeare quote as many will be commemorating 400 years since the bard’s death. Taken from Hamlet:

‘My words fly up, my thoughts remain below: Words without thoughts never to heaven go.’


Take Care,


Old Blogs, New Tricks- Part One!


Person writing in book uid 1171642

Hi there.

Welcome back!  Over the next few blogs, I will be re-visiting, updating and re-sharing some old favourites which I hope will help us all along this grammar road.

I use the term ‘us’ as I believe that we all need a little help once in a while and as a proofreader and article writer I cannot exclude myself!

With this in mind, I am currently doing an online Alison course – Introduction to Journalism. Now although I studied A Level Journalism many moons ago, I am doing this and other online courses to enhance what I know, and of course pick up new tips.  See, for the full choice available.

I am a great believer in using everything that you have at your disposal, especially if it is free.  Remember my blogs Free can be Fantastic Parts One and Two?  Well, here are the links for you to have another look at the great free courses which are available online. See, and

It’s been nearly a year since I  wrote some of these blogs and I have had more time to practice what I have preached about the sites that I mentioned in the blogs. I have seen first-hand how easy the site have been to navigate and I can share which ones I use more than others.

Please remember that these are blogs are my own opinions, and I always advise that you carry out research for yourself before you commit to anything.

Thanks for dropping by, and I look forward to your company next time.

Take Care,







Practice Becomes Custom!

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Hello there.

For the past three weeks through the Grammar Series, we have looked at errors in everyday language. Well, today I thought I would carry on along the same vein and mention words that are ‘brand’ names but now seem to sit comfortably in our day to day language. If you are a history person, then once again, you should enjoy this jog down memory lane.

The first example is probably the best example of this flagrant misuse of a word – Hoover.  When referring to vacuum cleaners, many call all vacuum cleaners ‘hoovers’ and when vacuuming (whether with a Hoover or another make of a vacuum cleaner) they may say, ‘ I am hoovering.’  Apparently, this started as a result of Hoover being one of the biggest selling makes of vacuum cleaners. The term continued, despite a decline in sales and can be a bone of contention with other vacuum cleaner manufacturers.

The Hoover company started in America in 1908. According to Wikipedia, James Spangler invented a basic suction sweeper because he suspected the carpet sweeper he used at work to be causing his asthma.  After working on the design and assembling electronic suction sweepers, he gave one to his cousin Susan Troxel Hoover to try. Being impressed she told her husband William Henry Hoover about it, and he bought the patent.  For the full history see this about the Hoover Company.

Two examples from the stationary world are Tipp- Ex and Post-it notes.  In real life they correction fluid and sticky notes.

According to Evelyn Vaz on  Tipp-Ex  (the correction fluid) was developed in 1965, despite the company Tipp-Ex being formed in 1959 in Frankfurt.

Post-it notes history, as told by David Hiskey, can be found here and is an interesting read.

I am sure if you did your own research (if you feel inclined in that way), you would find more examples like Chapstick (lip balm), Kleenex (tissues) and Q-tip (cotton buds). If you are going to search, make sure you search and not ‘google it,’ as I am increasingly hearing.  I am not saying do not use Google as a search engine, I am saying use the correct term for the action that you will be carrying out.

So why have these names now become generic terms used in everyday speech?   I guess the answer in one word is popularity. Something which is popular is not always correct. I have nothing against brands, but my bugbear is just the incorrect use of words in general.

While I am on the subject. Whenever I hear people say ‘nothink’ or ‘somethink’ instead of ‘nothing’ or ‘something,’ I cringe. This is the same as using text language which can become habit-forming and impacts our everyday use.  See my blog No text please we’re British.

A phrase that my mother uses all the time is ‘Practice becomes custom.’ In relation to language or any other skill you wish to develop, the saying means if you want to acquire or maintain good language skills, you have to make a point of practising every day.

I think encouraging the correct use of words in speech and anything which we write says that we care about our language and hopefully this will be passed on to the next generation.

I hope that what I have said does not come across as patronising, but I am passionate about what I do and I guess I want everyone else to feel the same way.

Take care,










Grammar Series – Part Three


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Hi there!

I hope you are enjoying this grammar series. Last week I mentioned how English grammar history has been influenced by Latin.  Seeing the journey that English language has taken it is easy to see why it is so complicated.  With this in mind, we will be looking at errors which have found their way into everyday language

. A good example of a word which is used incorrectly is Columbia. Apparently, the Colombians are tired of their country being spelt Columbia as opposed to Colombia. This is a common mistake and whilst the eagle-eyed will have realised that this has slipped into our vocabulary as an acceptable word, we have to ask how has this happened?

It could be said that over time, many words are now part of mainstream language due to the fact that they are commonly used.  All you have to do is look through an old dictionary from ten or fifteen years and compare it with one today and you will see the difference. Another theory can be found in an article in the Telegraph called ‘People can be too clever to spell’, where Jessica Salter raises some really interesting points about language and how we decipher and try to spell them according to what we know about them. Salter goes on to say,

Ian Brookes, the managing editor of dictionaries at Collins, said: “The real spelling problems occur when people have learnt the rules or have a bit of knowledge, but then make mistakes in how they apply this.”

For the full article see the Telegraph.

If this is the case it seems almost impossible to get things right unless you have a Masters in English and Linguistics.  Well, not necessarily. Whilst no one will ever get everything correct, there is a whole host of services and resources to help.

Firstly, use the spellchecker on your computer. Although not perfect as it is limited it what errors it finds, is a start. Next, letting a friend or family member cast their eye over the work is also helpful, as long as they have fairly good grammar skills. Thirdly, the humble home dictionary- either Collins or Oxford.

For a more than just spelling try one of the following: Online dictionary thesaurus     Online grammar resources like:

Or an article from Life hacker

Okay, so what are these errors that we inadvertently make all the time? There are words where a subtle change in the spelling makes all the difference. The words continuous and continual are prime examples.

For an explanation of these words and more excellent examples see Litreactor. Another example is in the use of the words affect and effect, which many seem to find difficult. For more about this and other grammar tips check Hubspot. I hope you have found this helpful. See you next time.

Take care,