A Ramsbottom nursing home has been celebrating the start of the school holidays with a new intergenerational movement and music project.

Lavender Hills on Stubbins Vale Road has been piloting the new 'Move & Groove’ scheme to improve mental health challenges, loneliness, isolation, and inactivity in residents.

Ramsbottom is one of 10 locations to pilot the scheme in which children are partnered up with residents.

Bury Times: Callum, age 6, at the Move & GrooveCallum, age 6, at the Move & Groove

Ollie Payne, 10, had never been inside a care home before.

His mum, Kelly Payne, who works at Lavender Hills, said: “Being here has given him a real understanding of the many issues that can affect the older generation.

"All the children involved have learnt so much and their confidence has grown massively.

"Ollie loves spending time with people and making them laugh and he loves music.”

Bury Times: George, a resident at Lavender Hills George, a resident at Lavender Hills

Although he was nervous at first, Ollie now considers many of the residents his good friends.

He said: “I’m a bit disappointed it’s over, I really enjoyed it, and am happy I’ve done it.

"I made loads of new friends - John, Gerald, George & Margaret - and would recommend it to other people my age.”

Bury Times: Margaret, a resident at Lavender HillsMargaret, a resident at Lavender Hills

After taking part in the pilot, Margaret, a resident at the care home said: “I think it’s good for older people to keep in contact with children because they make you laugh, sometimes they make you cry, but it’s the things that they say to you sometimes that are classic.

"I do think it’s a good think for young people to mix with older people too.”

Move & Groove has been developed by Intergenerational Music Making and Youth Sport Trust with funding from the Sir John Beckwith Charitable Trust.

The idea behind the programme was in response to evidence on the benefits that music and movement have on children, those suffering from isolation, loneliness or living with dementia and Parkinson’s disease.

Bury Times: The Move & Groove at Lavender HillsThe Move & Groove at Lavender Hills

Move & Groove has been designed to increase the confidence and wellbeing of children and older adults as well as offering them a sense value within their community.

Following the pilot, Southbank University are evaluating the impact on the wellbeing of both the elderly and the young people involved.  

Wellbeing participants have been tested to measure levels of cortisol, their stress hormones, at the beginning and end of the project.

Alison Oliver MBE, and chief executive of the Youth Sport Trust, said: “We are hugely passionate about inspiring changemakers and building belonging through the power of sport and play.

Bury Times: Move & Groove Move & Groove

“We know the transformational impact that being physically active can have on health and wellbeing, which is why we are incredibly excited and honoured to be one of the charities behind Move & Groove.

“Of the 220,413 young people we worked with last year, 75 per cent of them reported improvements to their overall happiness thanks to the power of sport.

“We can’t wait to foster relationships between generations and tackle some of the key issues like loneliness impacting society today.”