New Falkirk learning scheme for retired people launches

The University for the Third Age is launching in Falkirk this month
The University for the Third Age is launching in Falkirk this month

A new group is preparing to reinforce the mantra - it is never too late to learn a new skill.

The University of the Third Age is being launched in Falkirk, offering classes in subjects from philosophy to jazz appreciation.

The self help group, whose members share their knowledge and life experiences, already has branches in Stirling, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Secretary Austin Reid, has a background in education and university set-up and is helping to establish the Falkirk group. The inaugural meeting is scheduled for later this month.

Retired, Austin (72) from Bo’ness, said: “We have a varied range of classes already, but more will be added as more people join who can share their knowledge of specialised subjects.

“Learning is a wonderful gift and something you are never too old to do.”

The third age is defined as being after the first age, of youth and the second of career building and family raising. Although there is no age limit for the University of the Third Age , members must be retired or semi-retired.

The University of the Third Age allows older people to learn and gain new skills.In Scotland there are 43 groups with 7000 members.

Despite its name, it is not a university and no formal qualifications are involved.

The group is the only educational organisation run entirely by its members and is designed to be affordable for people living on a retirement income.

Austin said: “Many people retire in their 60s and find they have a lot of time on their hands.

“They might have always wanted to learn German or more about their local history but never found the time before. That is where the group is excellent. Everyone can be a teacher and everyone can be a student as every member will have knowledge they can share.”

“It’s an affordable way to continue your education in a social way.”

Membership costs £15 per year and members can attend as many classes as they like.

The first meeting will be held at Camelon Sensory Centre on Monday, January 26 at 2 p.m. If you can’t attend, more information is available at www. u3asites.org.uk/code/u3asite.php?site=733