THE glorious Trossachs was the setting for a day out and an inspirational tea party for older people from Kippen who live alone.

Kinlochard Village Hall, near Aberfoyle, hosted guests and volunteers from Contact the Elderly, an organisation that provides a vital lifeline of friendship for socially isolated older people who may not otherwise have much companionship in their lives.

Over tea, sandwiches and cakes, around 90 guests and 50 drivers, including two Contact the Elderly groups from Kippen, were treated to an afternoon of music and dance with the more energetic members of the gathering taking the floor to the tunes of accordionist and volunteer driver Raymond Chalmers.

Guests also enjoyed bagpipe music from teenager Murray O’May and a recital by harpist Katherine Harrison.

The annual event has been run at Kinlochard for more than 40 years and is a highlight of Contact the Elderly’s calendar, allowing numerous groups to meet up and make a day of it in the countryside.

This year 14 groups gathered at the spectacular venue overlooking Loch Ard but all across Scotland a total of around 130 groups are involved in organising free monthly Sunday tea parties, usually in a volunteer host’s home where guests are accompanied by volunteer drivers.

Caroline McGinlay, Support Officer at Contact the Elderly, said: “We are so lucky to have this opportunity each year to get together here in such beautiful surroundings. It’s a truly uplifting experience, not just because of the gorgeous scenery but because the atmosphere is always so cheerful. 

“Everyone always has a fabulous afternoon and that is thanks to the wonderful volunteer team at Kinlochard who are an enormous support to our own volunteers.”

To find out more about becoming a guest or volunteer of Contact the Elderly in Scotland, please contact Caroline McGinlay on or 01770600948