asked the Minister of Pensions how many next of kin of war deceased persons now receive a pension as a result of raising the means test level; and what are the total costs and the increased costs, respectively.
I presume the hon. and gallant Member has in mind the change announced in June last whereby the first 20s. of a parent's earnings are disregarded. As a result of this change, over 2,000 parents have had their pensions increased, the average increase being 7s. 7d. per week and the total annual cost £40,000. In addition, a small proportion of 1,700 new awards made during the last 12 months were admitted because of this improvement.