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Getting out of the house: the use of community transport as a third place for rural-dwelling older adults

Hagan, Robert J (2019) Getting out of the house: the use of community transport as a third place for rural-dwelling older adults. Ageing and Society. pp. 1-21. ISSN 0144-686X

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Abstract

Rural-dwelling older adults experience significant shrinkage in their social networks and capital due to transitions in later life related to poor physical health, mobility difficulties and bereavements. Being rurally located adds an extra layer of disadvantage. This article explores how older adults may use community transport systems to not only facilitate important social tasks but also maintain friendships and other valued relationships. Semi-structured interviews were carried out with 11 users of a rural transport community bus service in western Northern Ireland. The interviews identified that participants viewed the transport system as a highly valued conduit for helping escape isolation, maintaining autonomy, and providing an informal space for relationship building and accessing local news.

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