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Aberdeen care home on a mission to save traditional hobbies and skills

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A care home in Aberdeen has joined a nationwide campaign to save older hobbies from being forgotten.

A poll of 2,000 adults carried out by Care UK, which operates Tor Na Dee, on North Deeside Road, found reading a map, using a compass and even simple handwriting are high within the top 50 list of lost talents – and a majority of those surveyed (77%) blame modern technology.


In a bid to prevent hobbies and skills from being lost over time and give them a new lease of life, Tor Na Dee is encouraging locals to join a nationwide campaign to tap into thousands of older people’s expertise and knowledge – ‘Long Lost Hobbies’.

As part of the initiative, residents across the UK are revisiting favourite hobbies from their younger years and sharing their skills with younger generations – with those living at Tor Na Dee having the opportunity to join hobby clubs and take part in intergenerational activities regularly.

In Aberdeen especially, 52% of respondents think today’s generations aren’t interested in learning things like identifying plants and insects, sewing on a button or even spelling – while a further 67% said some old-fashioned skills simply aren’t needed anymore.

Maureen Barrett, Home Manager at Tor Na Dee, said: “Over time, many of us have become reliant on technology – meaning many hobbies that were once popular are now sadly being forgotten.

“This is why we’re excited to take part in the ‘Long Lost Hobbies’ initiative. Here at Tor Na Dee, we know residents have a wealth of skills and hobbies that are now considered to be on the decline – and that is something we wanted to celebrate.

“We’d like to encourage everyone in the Aberdeen community to join us in our efforts to save old skills and hobbies by reaching out to their relatives or neighbours. We have so much to learn from older generations – and I’m sure they’d be more than happy to share all of their knowledge.”

As part of the survey, it also emerged that 21% of people polled in Aberdeen think it will be just 10 to 12 years before they rely solely on technology to do things previously done without. Yet, 24% are still trying to keep certain skills and arts alive by teaching them to others.

For top tips on how you and your loved ones can revisit forgotten pastimes, please visit:

Tor Na Dee provides full-time residential, nursing and dementia care, as well as short-term respite care. Designed to enable residents to live enjoyable and fulfilling lives, the care home has its very own cinema room and hairdressers, and there is plenty of space both indoors and out for relaxation and recreation.

For more information on Tor Na Dee, please call Home Manager, Maureen Barrett on 0122 404 2731, email or visit



  1. Writing letters
  2. Map reading
  3. Knowing proper grammar
  4. Mental maths
  5. Remembering phone numbers
  6. Using a compass
  7. Handwriting
  8. Handwashing clothes
  9. Making a fire from scratch
  10. Stamp collecting
  11. Sewing/making clothes yourself 
  12. Spelling
  13. Wiring a plug yourself 
  14. Calligraphy
  15. Preserving food – such as pickling
  16. Sewing on a button yourself 
  17. Making your own jam
  18. Making your own cheese
  19. Tying knots
  20. Knitting
  21. Identifying different plants, trees or insects
  22. Changing a tire yourself 
  23. Making your own bread by hand
  24. Remembering addresses
  25. Using an index in a book
  26. Giving directions
  27. Remembering dates
  28. Reading music
  29. Carpentry
  30. Baking a cake by hand 
  31. Pottery making
  32. Storytelling
  33. Cooking something from memory
  34. Reading
  35. Putting up a shelf yourself 
  36. Critical thinking
  37. Time keeping
  38. Caring for chickens
  39. Speaking/learning another language
  40. Budgeting
  41. Creative writing
  42. Finding facts
  43. Following instructions
  44. Caring for plants
  45. Gardening
  46. Following a recipe
  47. Drawing
  48. Fishing
  49. Taking photos
  50. Editing photos yourself
Open to new residents

North Deeside Road, Milltimber, Aberdeen, Scotland, AB13 0HR


Care Inspectorate: Registered
  • Residential care
  • Dementia care
  • Nursing care
  • Nursing dementia care
  • End of life care
  • Respite care
  • Day club

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