I am delighted to be following Dr John Manley as your 249th President of the Anchor Society. I am sure you would all wish to join me in thanking all the past Presidents for their tremendous work but I think under Bob Reeves and John Manley we have had two successive Presidents who have engaged in new ways and new areas in our core mission of supporting the lonely and vulnerable elderly of our great City Region.

When I was asked to become President I was somewhat overwhelmed and bewildered. What could I do and how could I add value to an already well respected, innovative and creative society? As with all good academics I decided that I should do some research to learn about the work of the Anchor Society, the past Presidents and the difference that our work could make to those in need. I was ably assisted by former President Bob Durie who shared his archives and pointed to Anchor’s many projects and achievements. Having done this I feel the bar has been set very high for my year!

I aim to continue the great work already begun and build on the creativity and innovation of Past Presidents. It is clear to me that the world is changing very fast around us. Technologies are increasingly playing an important part in our daily lives and the work that is focused around how we ensure we harness the best of these to support people achieve longer, healthy and happy independent lives well into old age is an important goal. But it can’t all be about technology. We are human and the power of being with others, talking and sharing ideas, storytelling and engaging in activities is a vital component of healthy living and healthy ageing. I want to see how we can use the power of the Business Communities, Universities, Schools and Colleges to cross generations and bring people together; to develop new ways of engaging people and building new safe communities where we can support and care for each other. I want to listen and understand from those we support what they need or want and how we can best deliver that. I know I am going to learn a huge amount and I suspect be amazed at what is already happening.

I’m looking forward to the year ahead. We have much to do and I hope we can work and learn together, innovate and have fun as we take the Anchor Society forward towards its 250th President and 250th Year.

Professor Steve West CBE DL

anchor - steve west

Professor Steve West CBE DL