Grandparents to tackle pensions crisis

19 May 2004
Virgin Money is calling on Britain's ten million grandparents to help tackle the nation's growing pensions crisis.

The National Pensioners Convention gathers this week in Blackpool for the annual Pensioners Parliament and Virgin Money is urging the organisation to encourage grandparents to take an active interest in their grandchildren's financial futures.

In a letter to NPC president Rodney Bickerstaffe, Virgin Money suggested that grandparents could use their first hand experience of retirement to convince their children and grandchildren to think seriously about pension planning.

Virgin Money has created pensions fact sheets to distribute during the Parliament. One of the sheets explains how saving the price of a chocolate bar a day until a child is eighteen can create generous pension fund by retirement.

Virgin Money External Affairs spokesman Jason Wyer-Smith explained: "A quarter of our Senior Citizens are living in relative poverty and know all too well how hard it is to live on State Pensions alone. Despite this, over a third of UK workers do not save enough for their retirement and 80 percent of those are not saving anything at all. So far the government has done very little to encourage a change in attitude so we're hoping that grandparents can succeed where they've failed."

A report by the Pensions Policy Institute last year suggested that income from private or occupational pension schemes marks the difference between rich and poor pensioners.