Last month Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt described the chronic loneliness blighting pensioners as Britain's national shame and spoke of one million forgotten older people.
Since then the issue has remained in the spotlight and a number of charities have released worrying research. Earlier this month, Age UK published a survey which found that 450,000 older people face Christmas alone this year and just last week, The Campaign to End Loneliness published a poll which found that three quarters of GPs believe up to one in ten of their elderly patients are really attending surgery because they are lonely.
This week the issue is back in the headlines once more as Esther Rantzen launches her new project, The Silver Line, which aims to link lonely, older people to services in their area. She joins us today to discuss the problems Britain's pensioners face and offer advice to some callers on the subject.