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Loan charges: Older people struggling with heating bills

Millions of over 50s in Britain are already finding it hard to cope with the pressure of heating bills this winter as energy prices continue to rise, according to a new report.

Saga found that more than half (58 per cent) of people over the age of 50 are concerned with the cost of staying warm, with a third (35 per cent), the equivalent to seven million people, already facing difficulties.

A quarter of older people are being forced to cut down on how much heating they use to stay on top of their bills and still afford other expenditures, such as loan charges. They are taking other low-cost steps to stay warm, such as layering up with clothes or staying in bed longer.

This has worrying health implications for Britain's over 50s, with cold linked to many illnesses among older people.

"Recent figures from the Office of National Statistics show that 24,000 pensioners died of cold last winter in the UK," said Dr Ros Altmann, director-general of Saga.

"While this is a welcome reduction from over 26,000 the previous year, this shocking statistic shows that much more needs to be done to protect the most vulnerable in society over the coldest months of the year."

John Fieldman

Having worked in the city for 19 years, John's main focus is interest rates and corporate finance.ADNFCR-2776-ID-801509427-ADNFCR



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