‘Cruel’ state pension policy leaves World war II veteran, 99, £46,000 worse-off

‘Cruel’ state pension policy leaves World war II veteran, 99, £46,000 worse-off

'Pensioners REALLY MATTER': Government pledges to support Britain's elderly

Patrick O'Donnell

By Patrick O'Donnell

Published: 29/01/2024

- 08:31

Updated: 30/01/2024

- 12:27

The End Frozen Pensions campaign is urging the Government to take action as 3 million expats get the right to vote in UK elections

Pensioners are speaking exclusively to GB News about the “cruel, discriminatory” state pension policy which is costing them World War II service people upwards of £46,000. Older Britons who retire overseas in certain countries, including Canada and New Zealand, have their state pension payments frozen at the rate they were paid at once they left the UK.

This has been described as “unfair” by campaigners who have claimed Britain’s Government is the only one to “inflict such a burden” on its nation’s elderly. Recently, the UK just extended the right to vote for 3.5 million Britons living abroad but many pensioners affected by this decision still do not have access to their full retirement entitlement.

Anne Puckridge

Pensioners living in countries, such as Canada, have not seen their state pension uprated in line with inflation


One of the many Britons impacted by the policy of frozen pensions is Anne Puckridge, a 99-year-old expat based in Canada who is originally from Gloucestershire, and campaigner with the End Frozen Pensions campaign.

Following the recent law change, she now has the right to vote in the upcoming General Election this year after having lived in Canada for 23 years.

Currently, Ms Puckridge receives the basis state pension, which is the payment given to women born before April 6, 1953, at a rate of £72.50 a month.

However, her pension support was frozen at this amount when she first arrived in the country in 2000 at the age of 76.

Ms Puckridge believes she has lost the equivalent of around £46,000 due to state pension payments being frozen.

Currently, she receives Old Age Supplement (OAS) which is accessible to eligible low-income individuals who have lived in Canada for a decade.

Despite being a British World War II veteran, Ms Puckridge relies on other aid from the Canadians such as help with medical devices, money towards housekeeping and Meals on Wheels.

While she is able to get some additional support from the Canadian Government, the expat wants access to the money she is confident she and others are entitled to.

Ann Puckridge and empty purse

Thousands of expats are impacted by the frozen pension policy


She explained: “I am delighted to be enfranchised again. I worked all my life in the UK, supporting the country and I want my UK parliamentary candidates to understand that I will vote for the party which will commit to ending the discrimination of frozen pensions.

“My message to politicians is to ask that they question their own consciences as to whether the Government is justified in continuing with its totally unfair policy of freezing pensions based on location.

“The cruel, discriminatory policy denies frozen pensioners any degree of reliable health care or comfort in their final years. The UK is the only country in the world to deliberately inflict such a burden on its own, vulnerable pensioners. They deserve the justice.”

A Government spokesperson told GB News: "Our priority is ensuring every pensioner receives the financial support to which they are entitled.

“We understand that people move abroad for many reasons and we provide clear information about how this can impact on their finances.

“The Government’s policy on the uprating of the UK State Pension for recipients living overseas is a longstanding one of more than 70 years and we continue to uprate state pensions overseas where there is a legal requirement to do so.”

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