Help the Aged and Age Concern England have appointed a chief executive to lead the new charity they will form next year.
Tom Wright will start his role at the helm of the merged charity in January 2009. He is currently chief executive of tourist agency VisitBritain and was previously a board director of the Saga Group, which provides services for older people.
Wright’s early priorities include developing a name and brand for the new charity and bringing together the two organisations across the country. Separate and parallel merged charities will be set up in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, each with its own trustees and executive teams.
He said: “I envisage a strong single voice for older people – one which creates and influences policy at its origin, is based on a genuine knowledge base, and performs with a clear and tight agenda addressing issues such as poverty, health, control, loneliness and place.”
The merged charity’s chair, Dianne Jeffrey, said: “The new charity will be the most powerful voice for older people in the UK – and Tom’s track record of delivery will be pivotal in ensuring its success.”