Move over Wordle, there's a new brain teaser in town

Norwich Evening News reporter Maya Derrick, left, shows Claire Stevenson the puzzles on the new Evening News + app

Norwich Evening News reporter Maya Derrick, left, shows Claire Stevenson the puzzles on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

Whether it's a sudoku on the bus or a word search before breakfast, there's a new brain trainer for everyone on the Evening News+. 

And not only is it fun - experts are convinced it keeps players sharp too. 

This week, the team at the Evening News launched a puzzle section on the brand new Evening News+ app.

Users can find all their favourite puzzles from the print paper, from crosswords to codewords, but now in the palm of their hands.

The puzzles section on the new Evening News + app

The puzzles section on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

This follows the launch of Evening News+ last week, offering a superb user experience and an advert-light environment, bursting with subscriber exclusive content.

Michael Barber, health and care lead at Age UK Norwich, said that keeping the mind active - through activities such as puzzles - is a great way to improve brain health.

Michael Barber, health and care lead at Age UK Norwich

Michael Barber, health and care lead at Age UK Norwich - Credit: Michael Barber

He said: "Your brain is like a muscle and to keep it sharp and engaged, puzzles and activities that help to stimulate the brain really do help with keeping the brain sharper.

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"As we age, our cognitive abilities can diminish quickly without effective stimulation. The term ‘use it or lose it’ really rings true here.

"Research has shown that regular crossword completion can delay the onset of memory decline and completing puzzles can improve visuo-spatial functioning.

"Therefore using phone applications that have daily puzzles and crosswords can be very effective in reducing the risk of declining cognitive functions."

Dr Karen Harrison-Dening said that puzzles can increase memory, thinking, reasoning, attention, organising, and planning

Dr Karen Harrison-Dening of Dementia UK said that puzzles can increase performance across memory, thinking, reasoning, attention, organising, and planning - Credit: Dementia UK

Dr Karen Harrison-Dening, head of research and publications at Dementia UK outlined how puzzling can help retain - and improve - cognitive function.

She said: "Evidence shows that doing activities to keep the mind fit can help slow the decline in memory and thinking experienced by people with dementia.

"Puzzles can have beneficial effects in keeping our mind​s active and healthy. Research ​has found that people with dementia who undertake word or number puzzles frequently can increase ​their performance across memory, thinking, reasoning, attention, organising, and planning."

To subscribe to Evening News+, visit eveningnews24.co.uk/eveningnewsplus-the-evening-news-app. The first month of subscription is free, and £3.99 a month thereafter.

The new Evening News + app. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

What our readers think

With the shiny new app in hand, the Evening News hit Norwich city centre, talking to readers about what they think of the all-new puzzle section of the Evening News+ app.

Norwich Evening News reporter Maya Derrick tells Matt Freeman and Kez Flack about the puzzles on the new Evening News + app

Norwich Evening News reporter Maya Derrick tells Matt Freeman and Kez Flack about the puzzles on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

Kez Flack, 23, who originally hails from Portsmouth before moving to Norwich five years ago, said: "I like doing little puzzles. We went through a phase of buying puzzle books in lockdown - I think we went through about five books.

"I don't tend to do puzzles from the paper, but I'm definitely more interested now we've had lockdown and there's now an app version.

Matt Freeman and Kez Flack tackle the puzzles on the new Evening News + app

Matt Freeman and Kez Flack tackle the puzzles on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

Partner Matt Freeman, 23, added: "We get quite competitive. I definitely want to look into the Evening News' puzzles, it'd be nice to do them together."

Green city councillor and political assistant Claire Stephenson said that she feels more inclined to subscribe to the app now there are more ways to keep her brain engaged.

Claire Stephenson takes a close look at the puzzles on the new Evening News + app

Claire Stephenson takes a close look at the puzzles on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

"I think Wordle becoming popular has got people really thinking about puzzles again," she said. "I did actually buy a puzzle book recently after realising it was more fun than I thought it was.

"But Wordle can move over now I know about the features in the Evening News+ app, definitely.

"I like crosswords and general knowledge puzzles. I like keeping my mind busy.

Norwich Evening News reporter Maya Derrick, left, shows Claire Stevenson the puzzles on the new Evening News + app

Norwich Evening News reporter Maya Derrick, left, shows Claire Stevenson the puzzles on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

"The puzzle section in the Evening News+ app will stop me doom-scrolling through my phone.

"And with people spending more time looking at the news than they once used to, I think this is a way of getting a change of scene."

Students Namita Nair, 23 and Rahul Suresh, 22 said they hadn't really dabbled with puzzles since they were of school age, but liked the idea that a news site could get them back into the pastime.

Students Namita Nair, 23 and Rahul Suresh, 22 enjoy tackling the puzzles on the new Evening News + app

Students Namita Nair, 23 and Rahul Suresh, 22 enjoy tackling the puzzles on the new Evening News + app - Credit: Denise Bradley

"We're definitely up for expanding our puzzling horizons," Namita said.

Rahul added: "It's nice to have a puzzle that isn't just pictures like what I'm used to. It could get me into puzzles I've never tried before."

The app can be found in the app store on iOS and Android.