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More than half of older rural dwellers concerned about paying bills – double the amount six months ago

More than half of older people living in rural areas (51%) are now concerned about paying their bills, according to research from leading rural insurer NFU Mutual.

This has shot up in the past six months from 22%, as rising inflation impacts elderly rural dwellers.

The number of people in rural communities concerned about their pension savings has also increased from 40% six months ago to 53% now.

It comes as inflation measured by the Consumer Prices Index hit a 40-year high of 9% today.

To help combat these fears, older people in rural areas are seeking financial advice, with one in three planning to do so in the next six months, up from one in four six months ago.

David Nottingham, personal finance expert at NFU Mutual, said: “Rising bills are causing a great deal of concern for older people in rural areas, many who are more likely to be on fixed incomes.

“The huge increase in energy bills is eating into disposable income, with 40% saying they have seen in a fall in theirs this year.

“Some rural dwellers rely on domestic heating oil instead of mains gas. Although the rocketing price of heating oil has come down since it’s staggering high in March, it’s still roughly double the price it was this time last year.”