Learn New Skills From Older People With Decades Of Experience

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Learn New Skills From Older People With Decades Of Experience

This is a sponsored article on behalf of the Royal Voluntary Service.

Ever wanted to try your hand at the disappearing art of woodturning, or learn how to crochet like your granny? Head to Grandfest, a one-day festival with tons of free craft masterclasses, all taught by talented older people, aged 70+.

The Royal Voluntary Service — the charity for older people — is behind this event on 18 June, which is all about learning heritage skills from the pros. Whether it's quilting or jam-making, the crafts that were more popular years back are best taught by those with plenty of wisdom to offer.

Check out the highlights from last year's Grandfest:

This year, the masterclasses take place all over east London, from felting in Spitalfields, to cider making at Hoxton's Geffrye Museum. Give knitting a go at The Ten Bells, or roll your sleeves up for some wholesome bread making at the Aga store. You'll be transported back to a time when 'spinning' wasn't a workout, but a way to make yarn with a wheel.

There'll be performances in Spitalfields' Bishops Square, where you'll be able to listen to the awesome Bella Donna Brigade, or watch Swing Patrol's fancy footwork. As anyone whose nan taught them how to knit knows, we can definitely learn a thing or two from the older generation.

With Grandfest, the Royal Voluntary Service wants to promote the importance of staying active in old age — something best done by staying young at heart.

All the classes are free, with a suggested donation of £5 per workshop which goes towards supporting the 100,000 older people that the Royal Voluntary Service helps each month.

This is one of the biggest volunteer organisations in the UK,  with an army of 35,000 volunteers supporting over 100,00 older people each month. Volunteers run lunch clubs and activities but also help with more practical support  — maybe after Grandfest you'll be inspired to become a volunteer too.

If you've always wanted to be a pro preserve maker or fancied trying your hand at rag-rug making, there's no time like the present. Check out the full list of Grandfest masterclasses, and get booking.

Fancy getting involved? Find out more about the volunteering opportunities on offer here.

The event is being supported by McCarthy & Stone, the UK’s leading retirement housebuilder as part of their 40th anniversary year.

Last Updated 06 June 2017