Harman has spoken about age discriminationThe current default age of retirement could be set to be scrapped, it is reported – which may spell the end of age-related discrimination.

Minister for women and equality Harriet Harman said this week discrimination against older people needs to be tackled at the highest levels and public policy needs to change due to the number of able older people in the UK.

Furthermore, the idea someone is “past it” once they reach 65 needs to be altered, the minister told an Age Concern / Help The Aged conference, suggesting the default retirement age should be scrapped.

“We have to banish the ageism in the workplace that costs […] the economy up to £31 billion per year due to lost gross domestic product,” Ms Harman said.

She added older people are the last remaining group society deems “acceptable” to discriminate against, a problem which will be addressed in the Equality Bill.

Commenting on the news, Emma Soames, of Saga magazine, said the number of Britons who wish to continue working past 65 is constantly increasing.