Recent research by the National Literacy Trust suggested links between poor literacy and shorter life expectancy Posted on Thursday 22 February 2018 by James Pilkington The Trust looked at education, employment and income before splitting geographical areas into groups, ranging from those most at risk of literacy problems to those least at risk. This was all then compared with official data on life expectancy. The report found that people with low levels of literacy are more likely to live in deprived communities, be financially worse off and have poorer health - all of which can contribute towards shorter life spans. The Trust believe closing the literacy gap between communities more urgent than ever. Being able to read and write is not just the key to doing better at school, it's the key to almost everything in life. Such an impact on life expectation means that organisations like the Trust are having to improve their efforts to get more children from the poorest communities reading and writing, and it's nice to know that, in some small way, Bolton FM is helping tackle the problem through the use of radio. Although it's true that education starts at home, it really is up to us all to change these worrying figures and ensure our children have better - and longer - lives. We're shaping our schedule for International Women's Day, for example Pat Dickson and Angela Kelly are hosting Midmornings; Sue Devaeny has swapped the Octagon's stage for the Bolton FM studio to present Afternoons between 1pm and 3pm while Judith Bromiley and the wonderful staff of Bolton Hospice round out Internal Women's Day between 10pm andmidnight. Request a song for your mum or your nan and let them know you're thinking of them! You can email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Email before Monday 5th March at 23:59 and then join us all-day Thursday 8th March when we'll be playing your requests!