FAIRER funding for Worcestershire's schools has been promised if the Conservatives win the General Election - in a detailed manifesto which will hit pensioners in the pocket.

Theresa May today unveiled her party's election pledges, including £8 billion extra for the NHS and £4 billion extra to schools to finally solve the fairer funding conundrum.

But the Prime Minister also announced she would scrap the 'triple-lock' on the state pension and means-test winter fuel payments.

The triple-lock, which guarantees pensions rise by the highest of average earnings, inflation or 2.5 per cent, will be replaced by a so-called 'double-lock', with the figure of 2.5 per cent dropped from the equation.

Although the means-tested threshold for removing the winter fuel allowance has not been revealed, it will see the wealthiest over-65s losing £300 a year.

The changes are part of a big overhaul of elderly care.

Under the plan elderly people will no longer have to contribute towards the cost of residential care or care at home once their assets, including the value of their home, fall below £100,000.

At the moment they are expected to keep on paying until they have just £23,250 in 'housing wealth' or savings, dashing hopes of leaving a substantial inheritance to their loved ones.


WORCESTER'S Tory parliamentary candidate today welcomed the manifesto, but Labour's city hopeful calling it a "triple whammy" on the elderly.

Conservative Robin Walker said: "I'm delighted about the £4 billion extra funding for schools, it's exactly what I wanted to see and it means the small number of Worcester schools who were going to miss out on more funding, will be protected.

"I've had a lot of people ask me about the triple lock but the key element for is protecting it against inflation - I suspect inflation will be about two or 2.5 per cent anyway and if that's the case it won't make any difference."

But Labour candidate Councillor Joy Squires said: "Theresa May is hitting Worcester’s pensioners with a triple whammy.

"She’s scrapping the guarantee that state pensions will rise by at least 2.5 per cent each year; scrapping winter fuel payments unless you pass a means test and, the biggest hit of all, any Worcester pensioner who owns their own home will now have to pay for their care at home, no matter how little money they have.

"She has abandoned all pretence of protecting pensioners."


A FALL in the Worcester’s jobless numbers has been leapt on by a city parliamentary candidate.

New stats have revealed how the unemployment count in Worcester stood at 1,005 people at the end of April, 1.5 per cent of the population.

If the figure remains similar for May, it will mean the city’s claimant count has remained under two per cent for two years.

Robin Walker, Worcester’s Conservative parliamentary candidate, said: “I am delighted that in the last set of figures before the General Election we can see Worcester’s economic strength continuing to grow.

“By international standards we have been enjoying full employment for more than two years, but I am not fully satisfied with that.

“I would love to achieve the goal of eliminating youth unemployment and I will continue to work with local businesses to see how that can be achieved.”

On youth unemployment, the number of under-25s claiming unemployment benefits stood at 220, down by 30 in 12 months ago.

It comes as other hopefuls in the city insisted Worcester was still “struggling”.

Lib Dem candidate Stephen Kearney said: “You can see it when you go around the city - a lot of people out there are very angry.”

UKIP candidate Paul Hickling said it was time to “cut immigration and control our borders”, arguing that it would help get more people into work."