Pensioners are struggling to face up to living costs in the current economic climate, with 40 per cent of their outgoings now being spent on food and energy, it has emerged.
The information was made public by the Office for National Statistics this week, which understands that the oldest pensioners - those over 75 who may be receiving home care - are paying nearly half of their money for basic essentials, which also includes council tax.
Help the Aged head of policy Dave Sinclair said the money already received by pensioners was small, meaning that many were stretched.
The champion for the elderly added that single applications for benefits would improve the system and give older people the best chance at key benefits, which may be denied by the more complex means testing approach.
Mr Sinclair emphasised: "As much as £5 billion worth of benefits is going unclaimed by our pensioner population, which is a damning indictment of a system that is in urgent need of reform."
Help the Aged was established in 1961 by Cecil Jackson-Cole.
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