89-year-old posts ad looking for job because he's 'dying of boredom'

Offered interview by local cafe

Updated: 
Joe Bartley

An 89-year-old Devon man has been offered an interview after placing an ad looking for a job.

Former soldier and signwriter Joe Bartley, of Paignton, retired from a cleaning job six years ago. But, he says, after his wife died two years ago, he's found himself with nothing to do.

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"Senior citizen 89 seeks employment in Paignton area. 20+ hours per week. Still able to clean, light gardening, DIY and anything," reads the ad in the Torquay Herald Express.

"I have references. Old soldier, airborne forces. Save me dying of boredom!"

And Mr Bartley tells the paper he has already received an encouraging response, and will meet the owner of local cafe and bar Cantina tomorrow.

"I am going to see them on Thursday and told them I can clean tables or work in the kitchen," he says. "I am pleased I have been able to get the word out. I don't care if it is menial work - I am a working man and I just need a job."

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Mr Bartley says he hopes to get off housing benefit - and find something more interesting to fill his day.

"It's so boring here living in a flat on your own. I find myself going into Paignton and doing a bit of shopping so I spend as long as I can down there to kill time in the day," he says.

More and more people are working into retirement these days - as many as 1.2 million, data from the Office of National Statistics recently revealed. Nearly a quarter of people who were due to retire this year are still working, and around half of people approaching retirement age say they'd consider carrying on.

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However, despite research having shown that older people are more conscientious at work and actually less likely to call in sick, it's not always easy for older people to find a job.

One survey last year from the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) found that six out of ten managers believe that the over-50s have low or very low potential to progress.

But Kate Allen, co-owner of Cantina, doesn't share this view.

"We don't discriminate at Cantina and we are always keen to employ someone who is enthusiastic and willing to work," she says. ""After hearing more about his background, I think that he will have quite a few skills that will come in handy at the cafe."

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