Could you spare a chair for someone alone at your Sunday dinner table?

Could you spare a chair for someone alone at your Sunday dinner table?

The Sunday roast is a much-loved British family tradition and for lots of us, a highlight of the week. But for many older people living alone Sundays can be tough without anyone to share it with.

A recent poll from Bisto and Contact the Elderly found that a third of people over 70 eat alone every day with Sundays being the worse day for feeling lonely. And while 49 per cent say a good roast is their favourite meal,  four out of 10 will eat one less than once a month with loved ones. 

But the good news is that there's an easy peasy that you can help these people who are living on their own.

Lots of us have spare chairs stashed away in the garage or behind the settee as well as those standing unoccupied around our dinner tables, and by digging them out to offer to an elderly person in your area, you could help relieve their loneliness and make their Sundays special again.

Research has also shown that eating with family and friends helps boosts the appetite of people living alone, as well as making eating more enjoyable and not just a neccessity. This means sharing your roast could help make sure an older person near you  eats better too, keeping them lively and healthy.

Bisto and Contact the Elderly are launching the Spare Chair Sunday initiative to encourage UK households to sign up to offer a ‘spare chair’ at a Sunday roast at least once a year. Countdown favourite and TV personality, Rachel Riley, has already jumped on the scheme and hosted her own Spare Chair Sunday which she says "was the most uplifting experience to share a meal with an older person and chat away for a couple of hours."

To find out more and offer your spare chair go to The first 100 people to sign up to the scheme will receive a special Spare Chair Sunday thank you pack complete with hints and tips to host a Spare Chair Sunday and a host of Bisto products to make it special.

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