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GETTING older was never going to be easy for the rock and roll generation but the benefits maze, health issues and the breakdown of society have brought a barrage of challenges.

Top of the Hit Parade of problems is pensions, followed by housing worries and loneliness, according to Mike O’Brien who has launched a new website offering help and advice to the Over 50s.

Yesterday their troubles seemed so far away, but now many baby boomers are overwhelmed with issues that come with their senior status.
Businessman Mike, 60, set up after finding a lack of coherent information for his age group.
The website features everything from tips on buying retirement housing and claiming pension credit to getting fit and finding friendship.
“We over 50s represent over 33% of the UK population and I find it incredible that there is so little help and information out there,” said Mike.
“As a member of the senior age group I felt there was a real need to provide sorely needed advice in a simple and straightforward way.”
He added: “The Government sites are full of jargon and reading them takes hours and leaves you feeling even more confused.”
“I wanted to create something that was informative and helpful and provided a one-stop shop for the Over 50s.”
“I’ve also managed to negotiate some special offers and discounts and we have entertaining lifestyle features and news. Getting older isn’t all doom and gloom.”
Mike, who prefers the term “Seniors” to “pensioners” and “oldies” , also has an online friendship and dating webite  for the over 50s that has been hugely successful in tackling the problems of loneliness.
He added: “Society is very different from when we were young and loneliness is a big issue. There are more divorces, children move away and you can end up feeling very alone.”
“The site has been a great way for people to meet and we’ve had some wonderful success stories.”
His “Senior” websites are designed to appeal to the growing number of silver surfers who are still young at heart.
“We all still feel 22, but the fact is there are many issues facing us that didn’t affect previous generations and we need straightforward help and advice,” said Mike.
His own “Senior moment” arrived two years ago when he developed diabetes and was told to lose weight.
He started running, lost four stone and completed the London Marathon with his daughter Tara.
“The diagnosis made me realise I was getting old, but it also made me do something really active for the first time. Running the marathon made it to clear to me that the over 50s are only limited by themselves, which is why the strapline on my website is ‘Helping You Help Yourself’.”
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