‘Middle-age’ or ‘mid-life’ are often overlooked in policies and in academic research which focuses on the young and the old, yet they remain important thresholds in the lives of individuals.

As a threshold, middle-age is vital not only to transitions in individual life-courses but also to how society represents and relates to age. Because middle-age is made sense of in relation to youth and older age, a lot of issues associated with it (empty-nest syndrome, unemployment, menopause, policies at work) are rendered invisible.

This research intends to...

  • Explore what ‘middle age’ and ‘mid life’ mean to you
  • Discuss some of the different ways middle age is represented and understood in our everyday lives
  • Understand how your experiences of middle-age are shaped by a variety of everyday, historical, individual, social, cultural and political factors
  • Consider the moments when ‘middle-age’ is more or less relevant in your lives
  • Reflect on the different ways middle age is experienced
  • Consider the changes that have marked your life, particularly around middle age

I am interested in representing the diversity of what it means to be middle-aged. I am particularly interested in talking to under-represented individuals such as BAME, LGBTQ+ individuals and other minority groups.




  "This research aims to understand what the categories of 'middle-age' and 'mid-life' mean to those within the category"

Amy Barron, Researcher


For this research I will be conducting 10 roughly 1 hour long interviews with different people in and around who self-identify as being in ‘mid-life’ or ‘middle-aged’. This research is funded by an RGS-IBG Small Research Grant.

If you:

  • would like to contribute your voice to this research;
  • live in or around Prestwich (Bury, Greater Manchester) and/or have a significant association with the place;
  • and self-identify as being in midlife...

... Then please download a participant information sheet below to find out more.

To enquire about participating in this research please email amy [dot] barron [at] manchester [dot] ac [dot] uk.

The research may be expanded to consider those associated with other Greater Manchester locations at a later date.