| 01 Jun 2023
Love and sex lives uncovered on BBC Local Radio

MUMBAI: As BBC Local Radio is taking the temperature of its listeners’ love lives with a week of programming - Love in Later Life – Simon Bates brings his iconic Our Tune up to date.
Simon Bates’ iconic real life love slot - Our Tune - returns next week (Monday 19 to Friday 23 October) as part of BBC Local Radio’s Love in Later Life season of programming. As more people live longer many are looking for love for the second or third time. And with the world of dating constantly changing, Love in Later Life finds out if the baby boomers, who didn’t grow up with the internet, have kept up with the times - with a few surprises along the way. Across the week, BBC Local Radio lifts the lid on its listeners’ love lives finding out if they are really spending the kids’ inheritance on dating sites and looking good for new partners.

BBC Radio Devon’s Breakfast Show Presenter, Simon Bates said: “Our Tune evokes people of all ages who have a heart-rending story to tell or may be looking for romance!

"I am looking forward to sharing some real life love stories for Our Tune that I hope will touch the hearts of all our listeners.”

Exclusive analysis* from Mintel on the dating market for BBC Local Radio has revealed how online dating and apps are bringing a spark of romance to the proceedings for those finding love later in life.

Of the people Mintel spoke to, more than one in five (23 per cent) of the 55-64 year olds and 15 per cent of Brits aged 65 and over have met a new partner or date through a dating website or app - this compares to an average of three in 10 (27 per cent of) Brits. This highlights the importance of more modern ways of finding love - dating websites and apps are now the fourth most popular way of meeting a new partner or date and the same is true for consumers aged 55 and over. Today, 35 per cent of Brits aged over 51 are single.

The research highlights a growing acceptance of online dating among older consumers. In 2009, as many as 42 per cent of consumers aged 55 and over claimed online dating wasn’t for them. Today, just one in five (21 per cent) of the consumers over 55 say that online dating isn’t for their age group. And while in 2009, 29 per cent of over 55s said they felt that dating websites were unsafe, in 2015 this has declined to 27 per cent.

Further demonstrating the appeal of modern love, social media (eg Twitter, Facebook) has proved fruitful for one in 20 (5 per cent of) consumers aged between 55 and 64, and 3 per cent of those aged over 65. This compares to an average of 13 per cent of all UK consumers.

Overall, the top three ways in which older consumers have found a partner or date are:

Through family and friends (33 per cent for 55-64 year olds and 23 per cent for over 65s)

At a bar or club (32 per cent for 55-64 year olds and 16 per cent for over 65s)

At work (31 per cent for 55-64 year olds and 18 per cent for over 65s)

BBC Local Radio will broadcast and share on social media the ups and downs of Love in Later Life in your fifties, sixties, seventies and above.

Five key themes during the week:

· Online and looking for love. We’ll be looking at the numbers of over 55s looking for love on the internet with exclusive research from Mintel.

· Love second time around. With divorce and second marriages on the rise, is love better second time around?

· It’s all very different now. Changes in attitudes to sex and sexuality – coming out later in life.

· Age differences. Do older men really prefer a younger partner?

· Happy and single. The pressure to be a couple and the millions who couldn’t care less.