PENSIONERS are to be given VIP treatment at a special event in Darlington next month.

On Wednesday, July 2, businesses and organisations from across the town will converge on the Market Square to hand out free information and advice to pensioners on everything from banking to neighbourhood safety and hearing loss.

The OAP VIP event is the latest initiative from Distinct Darlington, which was formed to collectively promote businesses in the town centre through a variety of projects including making the town centre safer and more welcoming for visitors.

Among those taking part will be Santander, Newcastle Building Society and TSB, while experts from mobility firm Eden Mobility and Sky will be joined by staff from Darlington Borough Council and Neighbourhood Watch to answer visitors' questions.

There will also be entertainment and refreshments, as well as an outdoor performance of Zumba Gold - an exercise class which is specifically tailored for older people.

Manger of Distinct Darlington, Alex Hirst, said: "We listen very carefully to our visitors and to our businesses and we know that some elderly people are simply unable to queue for long periods in banks and shops, while others have problems accessing information online or over the phone.

"It can be quite daunting when you?re unsure who to approach for answers to your questions so we?ve brought as many businesses as possible to one place, to make it a little easier.

"This event will be the perfect opportunity for our valued OAPs to put their questions to banking and retail experts face to face and meet with friends for a coffee at the same time."

The free event will take place from 10am and 2pm.

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