Tories told they face chaos as ‘triple lock’ hangs in balance

Tory MPS were warned they will lose “thousands of votes” if they betray Britain’s pensioners.

The Government is yet to confirm whether it will increase the state pension by 8.5 per cent next April.

And Dennis Reed, Director of Silver Voices, warned that the “future of the Triple Lock hangs in the balance”, adding that “the next few days are crucial” to saving it.

Downing Street fuelled fears the 8.5% increase expected in April could be reduced after it said the settlement must be “fair across the generations”.

Dennis Reed, Director of Silver Voices, said: “The future of the Triple Lock hangs in the balance as the Government is still considering whether to stick with the tried and trusted formula and award an 8.5 per cent state pension rise next April.

“The next few days are crucial as the Government weighs up whether to make savings off the backs of pensioners instead, and risk electoral wrath.

“As representatives of older people, Silver Voices is calling for Tory MPs to be lobbied to impress on them how important the full implementation of the Triple Lock is, in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis.

“If the Lock is abandoned or diluted, despite manifesto promises, many will feel that the Conservatives do not deserve their votes in the coming General Election. Tory MPs must be made aware of this strength of feeling, as they fret over whether their seats are safe.”

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt is considering whether to change the formula by stripping out public sector bonuses so the figure is reduced to 7.8%.

Downing Street has repeatedly insisted it is committed to the lock but did not rule out altering the calculation and went further by linking the final decision to whether it would be fair to younger people.

Under the triple lock, the state pension usually rises each April by whichever is highest out of inflation, wages or 2.5 per cent.

Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures released on Wednesday showed that Consumer Prices Index (CPI) inflation was at 6.7 per cent last month.

But wages have gone up at a higher rate, with a figure of 8.5 percent expected to be used to calculate the state pension rise.

And in a message to over 274,000 people who have signed a Daily Express and Silver Voices petition, Mr Reed said: “If you have a Conservative MP, please write to them, referring to our petition with over 274,000 signatures, and point out that they will lose thousands more older votes if the Government breaches its manifesto promise on the Triple Lock and tampers with the accepted formula in any way.

“Ask the MP to refer our concerns to the Prime Minister and Chancellor.”

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