Vintage Volunteering (VV) began as a registered charity in 1987 with the establishment of the Retired & Senior Volunteer Programme (RSVP) – Outer London North by Mr Bill Ibbotson and a handful of volunteers. At that time, RSVP was a national organisation and was under the umbrella organisation of Community Service Volunteers (CSV).  The idea of a senior volunteer programme grew through the 60’s and 70’s in the USA and was an attempt to harness the skills and expertise of older people for the benefit of their communities, once they had ‘retired’ from conventional work. Bill had retired early and he and his band threw themselves into a huge range of volunteering situations, operating programmes from gardening to visiting retirement homes. But, in all cases, the ruling concept was to enjoy volunteering as much as the clients enjoyed the services and to be responsive to volunteers’ needs.

Bill receiving his award from the Mayor of Barnet

Bill receiving his award from the Mayor of Barnet

At the Barnet Civic Awards ceremony in March 2012 Bill was recognised not only for his commitment and selfless dedication to volunteering for more than 20 years, but also for inspiring other senior members of the community to do the same, through RSVP. Bill stepped down from running RSVP and is now our Life President.

He passed the reins to Barbara Davis, who ran the charity with infectious enthusiasm and boundless energy for many years. In 2015 CSV was renamed Volunteering Matters and Barbara guided us through this change and helped the group cope with the changing volunteer world. In Summer 2016 Jody Hyland took over from her and is now our Director.

In 2016, we decided to strike out on our own and separated from Volunteering Matters, renaming our charity Vintage Volunteering to indicate that our organisation is still 100% voluntary and that our membership is ‘vintage’…in the 50+ age bracket. Our guidelines remained the same. However, as time went by we found it increasingly difficult to get new or existing volunteers to organise and manage our increasing number of projects. The workload and time commitment required became too great for the few leaders that we did have. Eventually we decided that it was no longer viable to continue, especially remaining a 100% voluntary charity. So, in August 2017, we merged with Friend in Need Community Centre of East Barnet who have similar aims and objectives to us.  We are no longer a registered charity but are continuing most of our projects within FIN.


Contact FIN
020 8449 8225
Friend in Need Community Centre
East Barnet Baptist Church
Crescent Road
East Barnet EN4 8PS
 Registered Charity Number 1090701