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Older Londoners are falling behind in getting online

More older Londoners need to become 'silver surfers', according to Age UK Photo: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

New data has revealed the six out of ten over 65s in Greater London are missing out on the benefits of the internet.

The study was carried out by Age UK, which says the internet can offer huge benefits to older people, with recent research suggesting that people over the age of 65 are far less likely to report being lonely if they are connected to the internet.

There is a clear north-south divide in these figures; Tyne and Wear, where almost three quarters of older people don't have internet access, is at the bottom of the table.

Age UK says women aged 75 and over who live alone are the most likely group in society to have never been online. People with lower wealth and in poor health are also less likely to get connected.

Using smartphones is one way older people can get online Credit: Ian West/PA Wire

But although the South-East is generally doing well in this regard, a closer look shows that London has fallen behind the rest of the region.

David Mortimer, Head of Digital Inclusion at Age UK, said: "We hope this data will highlight to the government, local authorities and businesses the work that needs to be done across the country to help older people to get online. More services from the private and public sectors are moving online in a bid to make significant cost savings. However if they want older people to use these services, they need to help them get online in the first place with tailored and on-going support.”

The table below shows the percentage of older people in each south-eastern county who are offline. See how your area is doing when it comes to silver surfers.

  • Surrey - 37% offline
  • Buckinghamshire - 47% offline
  • Kent - 51% offline
  • E.Sussex - 51% offline
  • Essex - 53% offline
  • W.Sussex - 55% offline
  • Berkshire - 56% offline
  • Greater London - 60% offline