'Changes are needed to pension policies'

Your article urges people to check when the state pension becomes payable, with the forthcoming changes from November this year and the increase in age (Retirement date checks, LP October 12).

By The Newsroom
Friday, 19th October 2018, 3:51 pm
Updated Friday, 19th October 2018, 4:58 pm
The Government needs to review pension policy says a reader
The Government needs to review pension policy says a reader

I reached 60 recently and should have qualified for my state pension, but due to the changes, I now have to wait until 2024. As I turned 60 before the changes, the extra years to wait are, at the least, unfair. I’m also losing out on bus passes and various other entitlements.Ten years ago, I had a long period of sickness for over eight months and my sick pay from my employer ceased.I applied for benefits from the state as I had no other income. My claim was dismissed so I appealed. This was also dismissed. The reason given was, as I lived with my partner of many years and he earned a substantial wage, it was his responsibility to keep me, for the purpose of me claiming we were classed as “married”.My partner passed away and I made a claim for ‘widow’s pension’. This was refused because we were not married. So it is with disambiguation and technicality on claim forms and in government policy that a huge black hole appears which myself and thousands of others are now falling into. Six extra years is a long time to wait, surely it is time for the Government to review policy. Society today is diverse and no one rule will fit all. It should be a matter of course that, as couples in long-term relationships reach pension age, entitlement should be given to the surviving partner.Name and address supplied

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This must not happen againRegarding my recent letter concerning the imminent demolition of the Sumners (LP Letters, October 9). Well, by the time it appeared, the pub had been demolished and my letter looked a bit like trying to close the stable door after the horse had bolted. What is true is that the demolition company removed the tiles from the roof without permission, allowed ingress of rain, and then claimed the building had become unsafe. How a building that, only a few months ago, was open to the public can somehow become unsafe in such a short time is incredulous. The planning office in Preston was informed that the tiles had been removed soon after the event, yet they seem to have taken no steps to ensure the fabric of the building was protected. They could, at least, have ordered the covering of the roof with, say, a tarpaulin, while the planning application was resolved. It seems they were not very proactive in preventing the demolition before the date of the hearing. Either that, or they were ignored. This sort of thing must not be allowed to happen again.Paul RileyFulwood WW2 Armed Forces appeal

Re: Roll of honour. I am compiling a list of men and women from Preston who served in the Armed Forces and died between 1939 and 1945, or shortly after the war ended. I have so far drawn up a list of nearly 800 names.I am writing to ask readers to contact me if they think a relative should be on the list. This will help me confirm the names I have already found or add new ones. I can be contacted at [email protected] KayPrestonUnion flag for Old Dock HouseRe: The Old Dock House, Preston. What a fantastic job they have done renovating the building, but sadly they left on old rag on top of the flag pole. With Remembrance Day approaching, a new Union flag on display would make it a magnificent picture! Maybe the LP could give them a nudge.Tom Whitakervia email