Retirement Income Gap Is Postcode Lottery

The retirement income gap between the richest and poorest pensioners turns out to be a postcode lottery.

Pensioners living in the wealthiest parts of London and the South have incomes of up to £25,600 more than their counterparts living in the worst-off areas, such as Stoke on Trent.

But figures taken from HM Revenue & Customs data show that even pensions living just a few miles apart can have widely varying incomes.

For instance, pensioners in the City of London earn the most – an average £37,900 a year.

Around 12 miles away, pensioners living in the London borough of Barking and Dagenham manage on the second worse retirement income, an average £12,800 a year.

In Stoke, the average retirement income is the least in England at £12,300 a year.

Shocking disparity

In Scotland, mean pension incomes range between £20,000 in Stirling to £13,900 in North Lanarkshire.

In Wales, mean pension incomes vary between £18,700 in the Vale of Glamorgan to £13,900 in Caerphilly.

Helen Morrissey, personal finance specialist at Royal London said: “When it comes to pension incomes, there is not a simple north/south divide. While all the top 10 local authorities are in London and the South East, three of the lowest income authorities are also in in the region.

“Other areas with the lowest pension incomes are scattered throughout the UK.  Pension incomes across the UK are highly variable, with some prosperous pensioners living only a few miles down the road from those who are struggling. These figures show a shocking disparity in pension incomes.”

Top 10 places with best annual pensions

RankLocal AuthorityRegionAnnual pension
1City of LondonLondon£37,900
3Kensington & ChelseaLondon£26,700
4South BucksSouth East£26,000
5ElmbridgeSouth East£25,900
6Mole ValleySouth East£25,700
8ChilternSouth East£23,300
9GuildfordSouth East£23,100
10HartSouth East£22,600
10WaverleySouth East£22,600

Source: HMRC

Top 10 places with the worst annual pensions

RankLocal AuthorityRegionAnnual pension
1StokeWest Midlands£12,300
2Barking and DagenhamLondon£12,800
3HullYorkshire and Humber£12,900
4SandwellWest Midlands£13,000
5SouthamptonSouth East£13,100
6BolsoverEast Midlands£13,300
6=LeicesterEast Midlands£13,300
8KnowsleyNorth West£13,500
8=SloughSouth East£13,500
10SunderlandNorth East£13,600

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