MEL Stride, the MP for Central Devon, has welcomed the 8.5 per cent State Pension increase, which will put £900 more a year into the pockets of British pensioners.

The 8.5 per cent State Pension increase, which came into effect last week, is in addition to last year’s highest ever cash increase of 10.1 per cent and means that since 2010, pensioners are £1,000 a year better off than they would have been had their pensions gone up by earnings alone.

With inflation at 3.4 per cent, this is a significant above inflation uplift and he says it demonstrates the Government’s commitment to ensuring that those who have worked hard all their lives have the dignity and security that they deserve.

He adds that the Government is also continuing to support those who are most vulnerable by boosting benefits by an additional 6.7 per cent to ensure that a safety net exists for people whilst they are supported towards financial independence through work.

Mr Stride adds that the Back to Work Plan, which will invest £2.5 billion over the next five years to help 1.1 million people with their job search, alongside tax cuts for working people, will ensure that individuals are supported into work in a fair and reasonable way, whilst guaranteeing value for money for the taxpayer.

He said: “Thanks to the Triple Lock and our efforts to drive down inflation, we are putting money back in the pockets of pensioners.

“This increase will make a meaningful difference to those who rely on the state pension in Central Devon and across the UK, and is only possible because we have stuck to our plan and the economy has turned a corner.

“The 6.7 per cent increase for benefit claimants will ensure we continue to provide a safety net for those who need it most while making work pay wherever possible.”