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Rosie was Minister for Pensions and the Ageing Society from October 2008 to June 2009 at a time when the Government was undertaking a landmark reform of the UK pensions system in order to meet the challenge of an ageing society.

Rising wealth, better nutrition and improved healthcare means we are, on average, living longer and we will soon see dramatic increases in the oldest age groups.

For example, today there are about 10,000 people aged over 100. By 2050 it is predicted this will increase to 250,000.

Rosie believes that part of the Government’s strategy should be to tackle discrimination, so that the 70 year old who is still full of energy can continue to work, re-train, volunteer or contribute as an active member of the community.

If you want to make your views known about how better services can be provided for older people, contact your local champion for older people on 0870 770 3292 or joing Age Concern Doncaster's 50+ Parliament.

Listed below are some of the many offers and discounts for older people that the Government has already introduced to make sure people make the most out of their retirement.

Free Driving licence – If you are aged 70 or over you can renew your license with the DVLA free of charge. Call 0870 240 0009.

Free TV licence – If you are 75 or over you are entitled to a free TV license. Just call TV licensing information helpline on 0870 241 6468.

Free admission to Museums and Galleries – You can enjoy free access to permanent collections at most Government sponsored museums and galleries. Call 0207 211 6200 to find out which venues take part in this scheme.

Free Bus Travel – If you are 60 or over, South Yorkshire PTE provide a free off-peak pass allowing free fares on all forms of transport across South Yorkshire.

On 1 April 2008 travel to other regions by bus became free for people aged 60 or over. Call Doncaster Transport Information Centre on 01302 815 006.

Free NHS prescriptions and eye tests – If you are getting Pensions Credit you may also get free NHS dental treatment, free wigs and fabric supports and vouchers towards the cost of glasses or contact lenses and refunds of necessary travel costs.

Free Leisure Cards – A Leisure Card from Doncaster Council gives the holder large savings on a wide range of leisure activities for people aged 19 or over who live in Doncaster Metropolitan Borough.

Paid Work - If you are aged 50 or over and have been receiving a benefit (or Pension Credit) you may be eligible for the New Deal 50 Plus Programme which offers help with your job search from you Jobcentre Plus office.

Working Tax Credit (WTC) - You may also be eligible for 50 plus element of WTC. Contact Doncaster Jobcentre Plus Office on 01302 367 138.

Adult education - Learndirect can help you find out more about all apspects of learning. Whatever subject you are interested in, give them a call on 0800 100 900.

Voluntary Work – You can do voluntary work at any age and make a real difference to the community. Call Volunteering England on 0845 305 6979.

Rosie Winterton MP for Doncaster Central
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