§ Mrs. Bain
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many representations she has received asking for the continuation of the Christmas bonus scheme for retirement pensioners; and from whom these were received.
§ Mr. Meacher
I cannot give a precise figure, but my right hon. Friend has received a number of letters from Members of Parliament, members of the general public, and from pensioners' organisations about the bonus, including a letter dated 1st July from the hon. Member herself to which a reply will be sent as soon as possible. The replies already sent have made plain that a bonus is bound to be somewhat arbitrary in coverage and excludes a number of people who benefit from a general uprating. As already announced, the next uprating has been brought forward to the week beginning 17th November.