£10m Lottery grant to Blackpool charity to run dry

Dame Esther Rantzen
Dame Esther Rantzen
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A charity that provides a friendly ear to lonely older people is in need of cash.

The Silver Line, which is based in Blackpool, is the only confidential free helpline for elderly people in the UK.

Its founder, Dame Esther Rantzen, has now said that the service’s £10m Lottery grant will run out in September.

The charity receives 10,000 phone calls each week.

Dame Esther, 78, told The Express: “We urgently need funds to meet demand which is growing exponentially. We have become the emergency service for older people so the last thing we want to do is reduce the service.”