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31,000 excess winter deaths

There were 31,000 deaths linked to cold weather last winter, new figures show. The number of "excess winter deaths" in England and Wales rose by 29% compared with the previous year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

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Majority of winter deaths among pensioners

The majority of winter deaths reported by the ONS were among pensioners with over-75s accounting for 25,600 winter-related deaths in 2012/13.

Deaths peaked in the first week of January. Credit: Peter Byrne/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Deaths were highest in the North West in 2012/13 and lowest in London.

"The number of deaths peaked in the first week of January, which coincided with a peak in rates of influenza-like illness over the Christmas weeks," the ONS report said.

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