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Significant rise in people working past 65 since 2000

Published on: 13 Nov 2023

There are now almost one million more workers aged 65 or above than there were at the turn of the century, according to a charity.

Significant rise in people working past 65

The Centre for Ageing Better examined Office of National Statistics data and found that 11.5% of the population is now working past their 65th birthday. That figure was 5.2% in 2000.


There are now 5.4 million more workers in employment than there were in 2000, with 976,000 of these aged 65 or above. During the same period, the number of people working past 65 rose from 457,000 to 1.43 million.


Older workers are more likely than younger age groups to work for themselves, with the over-60s accounting for 17.4% of self-employed workers.


Although most over-65s in work are part time, the proportion in full-time jobs rose from 25% in 2000 to 34% in 2023. Almost 80,000 workers aged 65 and above are on zero-hours contracts, accounting for 5.5% of workers in this age group. Only workers aged 16–24 include a higher proportion on zero-hours contracts, at 11.6%.