Over-85s ‘want to be called the Real Seniors’

There are now more than 1.5 million people in this age bracket

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The Independent Online

They are the Long Lived, the Wisdom Warriors and the Very Oldies, but the term most people aged over 85 would prefer to be called by is the Real Seniors.

A poll for Radio 4 of those aged 85+ found that of a selection of names which could replace catch-all terms such as “pensioners” and the “elderly”, the Real Seniors was preferred by 40 per cent.

With more than 1.5 million people now in this age bracket, and with numbers expected to increase to 5 million by 2050, Radio 4’s The Invisible Age felt that a distinct name was needed to ensure they weren’t ignored by wider society.

Over 85s were first polled by ICM to give their suggestions, five of which were then put to a further 1,001 Real Seniors to see which they preferred.

The Long Lived came second with 26 per cent and Wisdom Warriors at 12 per cent. The Very Oldies and The Venerables scored 6 per cent each.

Matthew Sweet, presenter of The Invisible Age, said: “Let’s celebrate the achievement of those who are pushing the limits of human longevity.”