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Live life to the full and face up to your death
IT MAY sound morbid, but too many people in Oxfordshire are unable to confront the idea of their own death.
An event at Oxford Town Hall next week – including a talk from TV celebrity Esther Rantzen – will encourage people to live each day to the full and think about the inevitability of extreme old age and death.
Age UK Oxfordshire says people are afraid to think about old age, which leaves them unprepared. It says that although it may be difficult, thinking about care homes, making a will and sorting out funeral plans can make the whole process easier.
Charity chief executive Paul Cann said: “We all die but we don’t like to talk about it. It’s a whole culture of denial. Around 30 per cent of people have never even discussed the subject.”
Mr Cann said it was important to talk to relatives about plans for old age, to improve the quality of life in the last few months.
He said: “Many people say they want to die at home, for instance, but most people die in hospital.
“You need to think about making a will, or deciding what kind of care home you would prefer to go into.
“Would you like to be buried or cremated? And who would you make your power of attorney?”
Howard Beachey, 76, from Abingdon, made a funeral plan with Age UK Oxfordshire in November.
He said: “I think it’s a good idea and made perfect sense. Making our arrangements now means it will save our children from this in the future and it’s reassuring to know it will only take one phone call at the time of death.”
The event at the Town Hall in St Aldate’s on Tuesday, will include information from hospices as well as groups aimed at making the most of life.
It coincides with the national Dying Matters awareness week.