I’m on the Flying Scotsman to York (the Yorkshireman). My carriage is full of pensioners (including me), people thanking their lucky stars they’ve got the chance to ride behind this famous loco and sit in a beautiful compartment.
And the people in this carriage are enjoying the luxury of first class travel that their parents and grandparents might never have dreamed of. Judging by the conversations I’m overhearing, none of these pensioners are skint – but nor are they showing distress at the rate of burn against their drawdown.
Our compartment is being looked after by a BAE pensioner who does the job for nothing – he’s just told us he likes riding the train and sharing his knowledge with the passengers.
I’m a pensioner, I get a set amount every months from the Zurich Staff Pension Scheme and I’m totally in my element. Stella- who oversees the payment of pensions to thousands of Lloyds Bank pensioners , is a baby – and it’s her birthday – and she’s not a pensioner – the young pup that she is!
The driver of the train is doing this for nothing – he’s a pensioner too! Like all good pensioners he’s moaning about Network Rail’s bureaucracy as we await the arrival of their health and safety manager “wouldn’t have happened in my day!”
That I am blogging on my wifi from the carriage , is clearly causing some concern – but generally, we are happily living the dream of our baby-booming childhoods!
Spend don’t save!
Paul Johnson of the IFS was moaning earlier this month that too many pensioners weren’t spending any money, but either deliberately delaying drawdown to pass pensions on to children or just are just too scared of running out of money.
Jeremy Cooper was moaning about the same thing happening in Australia (apparently the Aussie tax authorities don’t look kindly on people taking money out of the system with tax advantages and not putting it back (paying consumption taxes).
Looking around at my fellow passengers I get it. These people are being paid to enjoy themselves by their pension scheme. They are not being paid to worry about their pensions running out- because it never will. The people in this carriage are enjoying a wage for life.
What are we about?
I am very contrarian. I believe that spending your pension is as important as building the pension in the first place.
People over 55 should be being educated to have a bit of fun, like this lot. Steve Webb was right when he encouraged people to buy a Lamborghini!
Pensions are for spending, retirement is for having fun and this train is proof positive that fun can be had.
Stella is boring me solid about GMP equalisation, I shall shut her up soon – and get some champagne down her neck! The sun is shining!