Elderly people are upset after Age UK revealed it will be closing three of their wellbeing centres at the end of the month.

Age UK announced last week that it will be shutting centres in Bexleyheath, Northumberland Heath and Upper Belvedere as the buildings are proving to be “increasingly inflexible as a resource” and that a “more targeted approach can be delivered elsewhere.”

A statement released by the organisation read: “With less than 30 per cent of those accessing the charity’s services living in parts of the borough with the highest rates of income deprivation and social isolation, the decision has been taken to deliver more assertive community outreach to broaden the charity’s impact.”

Age UK Bexley also said that it now has an opportunity to build on its Befriending Cafe model which, according to its website, are sessions which “provides an older person with a link to the outside world and often acts as a gateway for other services and valuable support.”

Councillor Brad Smith, cabinet member for adult services in Bexley, said: “Developing a more inclusive community approach fits with the way later life has changed for older people, and more assertive community outreach should broaden the charity’s impact.”

However, some local residents and frequent visitors to these centres fear for the future of events and workshops which they used to hold and attend in the centres.

Anthony Charge, 64, who uses the Northumberland Heath centre, has said that he is very upset with the decision.

He said has formed strong friendships with the other attendees and volunteers who run the centres.

“At the end of the day, we’re all looking for companionship. Where are we going to go now?” he said.

Mr Charge told News Shopper the wellbeing centre provides him with regular social interaction with others of the same age and that people of his age “need these services.”

He explained that after he had to close his 43-year-old boating equipment shop in Sherwood Avenue Park, Sidcup, he suffered with some mental health issues but that the centre offered him a lifeline.

“It’s a lifesaving thing for me and all the other people who are there. If you don’t have somewhere to go in life, you feel like you’re forgotten,” he explained.

Conservative councillor for Northumberland Heath John Fuller said the council will be looking for a meeting with Age UK to discuss this matter.

Labour councillor for Northumberland Heath Wendy Perfect said that although she understands the charity is adopting a more inclusive community approach, the closure of the centre in her ward will be "a huge loss" for people in the area.

She also said that in order to "mitigate this loss", the exercise classes which occur at the wellbeing centre should be held in a similar venue in Northumberland Heath.

CEO of Age UK Bexley, Guy Stevenson, has said that although the charity acknowledges this may represents a loss in a much-loved service, Bexley is “not the borough it was 30 to 40 years ago” when these buildings were opened.