§ Mr. Thorpe
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what was the total cost of paying the £10 Christmas bonus to pensioners in each of the years since its inception; and what would have been the cost of paying it this year.
§ Mr. O'Malley
The cost of the bonus in 1972, 1973 and 1974 was £79 million, £80 million and £92 million respectively. On the assumption that a payment this year would have been made to the same categories of beneficiaries as in 1974, the cost would have been £94 million.