Debdale Intergenerational Bowls & Brews Partnership

Bringing together Debdale Bowling and Social Club and Manchester Cares to deliver the Bowls & Brews intergenerational project.


Debdale Bowling and Social Club asked buzz Manchester for support with recruiting new younger members to join the club. buzz connected them to Manchester Cares and helped to develop the Bowls & Brews intergenerational project to link new members, young and old, to the Bowling Club via Manchester Cares. Together they have set up a regular activity at the Bowling Club which is bringing in many newcomers, these new members have been enjoying getting out of the house to play bowls and enjoy each other’s company.


Gorton and Levenshulme

Benefits of intergenerational projects

Intergenerational projects provide opportunities for bringing older and younger people together, and building relationships and understanding between those who live and learn in the same community. Intergenerational practice aims to bring people together in purposeful, mutually beneficial activities such as sharing skills, memories and ideas between the different generations which promote greater understanding and respect between generations and contributes to building more cohesive communities. The beauty of intergenerational events is that the benefits go both ways. Studies show that children who participate in activities with older adults tend to have improved reading scores, communication skills, problem-solving skills and a positive attitude toward community service.

Benefits of social activities

Connecting with others is one of the Five Ways to Wellbeing, five evidence-based actions which can improve personal wellbeing. Social connectedness has a strong positive impact on both physical and mental health. Increased social connectedness is linked to reduced mortality risk, healthier lifestyles and higher cognitive functioning. Socially well-connected people are more resilient, feel more able to take charge of their lives and are less stressed. Older adults that are socially connected experience increased life satisfaction.


“It has been great to meet Olwyn and the ladies from the Bowls Club and be able to put on a joint activity with them. For so many of our social clubs it is younger neighbours showing older neighbours around new bars, spaces or new skills, so it’s great to have an activity here in which our older neighbours are showing younger neighbours how to get stuck in!

We are really appreciative of Noah for making the introduction between Manchester Cares and Debdale Park, and for highlighting the impact we could have on the local community together (and to try something new in our programme!). Making links and introductions between local organisations is one of the most useful things that we get support with from buzz Manchester, and means that we have a foot in the door when arranging activities like this (and means we know where to start in neighbourhoods, like Gorton, that are new for us as an organisation!).” - Amy Saunders, Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator, Manchester Cares

“This was great fun.” - Bowls & Brews participant


In partnership with Debdale Park Bowls Club, Manchester Cares have held Bowls & Brews sessions on 2 dates. Younger and older neighbours have been able to have a go at bowls and learn from the experienced and welcoming members of Debdale Park Bowls Club. The project will continue, and hopefully grow as time goes on.

Number of older neighbours: 24

Number of younger neighbours: 9

Number of sessions: 3 (2 slots on 15th July, 1 slot on 24th August 2021)

Project Team

buzz Manchester Health & Wellbeing Service

Debdale Bowling and Social Club

Manchester Cares

Strategic links to local/national policies (intergenerational projects)



Increased mental wellbeing

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Social integration

Manchester Population Health Plan

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health,2014)

Helping child development

Developing Well: Aged 6 to 11 years

Developing well: Aged 11 to 19 years

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Lessen isolation and loneliness

Manchester Population Health Plan

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health,2014)

Greater Manchester Age Friendly Strategy

Research/evidence base

University of Stirling (2010) Intergenerational place-based education: where schools, communities and nature meet.

Clark, Michael, et al. (2016) Integrated working and intergenerational projects: a study of the use of sporting memories. Journal of Integrated Care, 24 (5/6). pp. 300-312.

Statham, E. (2009). Promoting intergenerational programmes: where is the evidence to inform policy and practice? Evidence and Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice, 5(4), pp.471-488.

Carolyn Kagan, et al. (2012) Intergenerational work, social capital and wellbeing. Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice Volume 3, Issue 4

Local Government Education and Children's Services Research Programme (2010) Intergenerational practice: outcomes and effectiveness

Alan Hatton Yeo/Beth Johnson Foundation (2007) Intergenerational practice: Active participation across the generations

Strategic links to local/national policies (social activities)



Social inclusion

Manchester Population Health Plan

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health, 2014)

Enabling resilient communities

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Increased mental wellbeing

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Helping people live healthier lives

Healthy Lives, Healthy People (MH Government, 2010)

The Manchester Locality Plan – A Healthier Manchester

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Manchester Prevention Programme

Research/evidence base

Global Council on Brain Health (2017) - The Brain and Social Connectedness

Ministry of Social Development (2018) - The measurement of social connectedness and its relationship to wellbeing

New Economics Foundation (2008) – Five ways to wellbeing

Oliver Huxhold, Martina Miche, Benjamin Schüz. (2014) Benefits of Having Friends in Older Ages: Differential Effects of Informal Social Activities on Well-Being in Middle-Aged and Older Adults, The Journals of Gerontology: Series B, Volume 69, Issue 3, Pages 366–375.

Umberson, D. & Montez, J. K. (2010) Social Relationships and Health: A Flashpoint for Health Policy. Journal of Health and Social Behavior. 51(S) S54–S66.


Noah Mellor - Neighbourhood Health Worker

Tel. 0161 271 0501

Mob. 07484 546326

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