Loneliness and Isolation; Planning a Solution

Loneliness and Isolation, Planning a Solution

April 18th 2018, Saracen House, Glasgow

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The Equal Opportunities Committee report on Social Isolation was the first of its kind anywhere in the world. The committee found that social isolation and loneliness was a problem in Scotland, and recommended that the Government developed a national strategy to tackle it and the current Scottish Government consultation is an important part of this process.

Social Isolation and loneliness is an issue that can affect anyone at any age or stage of their lives. Feelings of loneliness have been demonstrated to have wide ranging consequences for those effected and has been shown to lead to depression across all ages, as well as cognitive decline and dementia in older people. There are also serious physical health implications.

The design and planning of public spaces and communities has the capacity to be a vital tool in tackling this issue with community engagement, consultation and inclusion in the planning process having the potential to create communities, both rural and urban, with genuine opportunity for and facilitation of social interaction through innovative approaches and new strategies such as co-housing.

With this event, PAS aims to facilitate further discussion between the relevant government agencies, central government, local government, RSLs, planners, development trusts and other private, public and third sector stake holders. The outcomes from these discussions then have the capacity to help inform responses to this consultation.


PAS helps people to engage with the places they live in. PAS provides impartial planning advice, training, education programmes, facilitation, community visioning and awareness-raising to ensure everyone has a voice in creating positive communities.

Event Agenda

9:20 Introduction from the chair – Irene Beautyman, The Improvement Service

9:30 Session one: Loneliness and isolation, the causes and impacts

Opening address

The place of kindness – Zoe Ferguson, The Carnegie UK Trust 

Assessing and dealing with isolation locally – Margaret Fraser, ng homes

The role of placemaking in creating socially connected communities – Petra Biberbach, PAS


10:45 Break and networking

11:00 Session 2: Loneliness in our communities

The role of the Place Standard in assessing and addressing isolation – Paul Wallace, Keep Scotland Beautiful

(Re)connecting older people with their communities – Paul White, Link Group Ltd

The role and impact of funding and investment – Allison Mathews, The Big Lottery Fund

Planning case study


12:20 Closing remarks from the Chair

12:30 Lunch and networking

14:00 Close