Pensioners take to streets for global cause

1/10/11      MO''The Portsmouth Pensioners Association walk from South Parade Pier to Clarence Pier, pictured at the start with Lord Mayor Cheryl Buggy''Picture: Paul Jacobs (113482-3)
1/10/11 MO''The Portsmouth Pensioners Association walk from South Parade Pier to Clarence Pier, pictured at the start with Lord Mayor Cheryl Buggy''Picture: Paul Jacobs (113482-3)
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PENSIONERS rolled back the years as they walked, marched and jogged along Southsea seafront in aid of an international cause.

Members of Portsmouth Pensioners Association (PPA) took to the streets and rallied the support of locals as they set off on foot from South Parade Pier to Clarence Pier, in Clarence Parade.

1/10/11      MO''The Portsmouth Pensioners Association walk from South Parade Pier to Clarence Pier, pictured at the start with Lord Mayor Cheryl Buggy''Picture: Paul Jacobs (113482-2)

1/10/11 MO''The Portsmouth Pensioners Association walk from South Parade Pier to Clarence Pier, pictured at the start with Lord Mayor Cheryl Buggy''Picture: Paul Jacobs (113482-2)

The team of 25 volunteers held international flags at Saturday’s ‘pier to pier’ event to mark UN International Day of Older People.

The global occasion highlighted the important role elderly people have in society.

Alan Burnett, chairperson of PPA, enjoyed taking part in the sunny spectacle.

Alan, 71, said: ‘There were a number of messages we wanted to get across to people. Firstly, we wanted to show that people of our age are active and like to have fun.

‘It’s also about telling people they should keep active and well. I’ve just had a hip operation so it was a great achievement for me.

‘I can’t run any more but I can still walk.

‘There was a great mix of people that turned out, from those who regularly walk to others who don’t that often.’

The event, which took the team just under an hour to complete, was also part of Portsmouth City Council’s 60 and over festival.

Celebrations kicked off with a tea party at the Pyramids Centre, in Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, on Friday.

June Clarkson, 78, secretary of PPA, said: ‘I had to stop halfway to have a drink and rest, but it was a lot of fun. I hope people don’t think the elderly already have one foot in the grave.’

A stall in Palmerston Road Precinct was held later in the day to show the team’s link to the Ethiopian Elderly and Pensioners National Association (EEPNA). Posters were displayed of a ‘Pompey’ health clinic, which was built by the EEPNA thanks to money raised by Portsmouth Pensioners.