89-year-old posts ad looking for job because he's 'dying of boredom'

Joe Bartley

An 89-year-old Devon man has been offered an interview after placing an ad looking for a job.

Former soldier and signwriter Joe Bartley, of Paignton, retired from a cleaning job six years ago. But, he says, after his wife died two years ago, he's found himself with nothing to do.

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"Senior citizen 89 seeks employment in Paignton area. 20+ hours per week. Still able to clean, light gardening, DIY and anything," reads the ad in the Torquay Herald Express.

"I have references. Old soldier, airborne forces. Save me dying of boredom!"

And Mr Bartley tells the paper he has already received an encouraging response, and will meet the owner of local cafe and bar Cantina tomorrow.

"I am going to see them on Thursday and told them I can clean tables or work in the kitchen," he says. "I am pleased I have been able to get the word out. I don't care if it is menial work - I am a working man and I just need a job."

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Mr Bartley says he hopes to get off housing benefit - and find something more interesting to fill his day.

"It's so boring here living in a flat on your own. I find myself going into Paignton and doing a bit of shopping so I spend as long as I can down there to kill time in the day," he says.

More and more people are working into retirement these days - as many as 1.2 million, data from the Office of National Statistics recently revealed. Nearly a quarter of people who were due to retire this year are still working, and around half of people approaching retirement age say they'd consider carrying on.

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However, despite research having shown that older people are more conscientious at work and actually less likely to call in sick, it's not always easy for older people to find a job.

One survey last year from the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) found that six out of ten managers believe that the over-50s have low or very low potential to progress.

But Kate Allen, co-owner of Cantina, doesn't share this view.

"We don't discriminate at Cantina and we are always keen to employ someone who is enthusiastic and willing to work," she says. ""After hearing more about his background, I think that he will have quite a few skills that will come in handy at the cafe."

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7 ways to improve your retirement

If, like many Britons, you have failed to save the cash you need to maintain a comfortable standard of living in retirement, one option is to sell your home and downsize to a smaller property, using the money leftover to cover your living costs.
If moving out of the family home is too much of a wrench, however, the good news is that equity release schemes allow you to stay in your house or flat while still using the equity built up in it to provide some extra cash. The downside of the schemes, which work a bit like mortgages, is that you may not have much left to pass on to any children or other relatives.
But that's a small price to pay for a reasonable standard of living. For more information, try Age UK on 0800 169 6565.

Choosing the right annuity can have a significant impact on your retirement income. And as with most pensions, you automatically have what's called an 'open-market option' (OMO), you can scour the market for the highest annuity rate.
It is worth checking what your pension provider is offering first, though, as some companies offer guaranteed rates for existing customers that are likely to beat those available elsewhere. The Pensions Advisory Service on 0300 123 1047 is a good place to get some free advice.

On retirement, most people convert their pension fund into a guaranteed income annuity that pays out the same amount every month for the rest of their lives.
However, you can also choose an increasing annuity that pays out smaller amounts in the first few years but offers larger payments further down the line. This may prove a wise move if the rate of inflation remains at over 2%.

It is now easier to work later in life because the "default retirement age" has been scrapped.
People approaching retirement age and worrying about money can therefore choose to work for a few years longer - potentially transforming their financial situation. Other than the extra income from working, these people can look forward to higher state pensions, and higher annuity rates due to their greater age.
They can also benefit from bigger tax allowances and the fact that they no longer have to pay National Insurance contributions. Check out this nidirect website for more details.

You could get a much better rate with an impaired-life annuity if you have a medical condition that is likely to reduce your life expectancy.
Incredibly, even snoring, which is a common symptom of Sleep Apnoea could have an impact.
According to figures from MGM Advantage, a man with this condition could receive an extra £12,000 retirement income over the course of their retirement - or £571.44 extra money each year. Click here to find out more.

To maximise your retirement income, it is vital to ensure that you are receiving all the benefits to which you are entitled. These include the basic State Pension, and in some cases, the additional State Pension.
If you are on a low income, you could also qualify for the guaranteed element of Pension Credit, while those with some savings may get the savings element of this benefit. For more information about these and other benefits such as the Winter Fuel Payment, click here.

Many older couples rely on the pension income of one person - often the man. Should that person die first, the other person can therefore be left in a difficult position financially.
One way to prevent financial hardship for the surviving person is to take out a joint life annuity that will continue to pay out up to 67% of the original payments to the surviving partner should one of them die.
The disadvantage of this approach, however, is that the rate you receive will be lower. Again, the Pensions Advisory Service on 0845 601 2923 is a useful first port of call if you are unsure what to do.

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