Calls have been made to compensate more than 15,000 Bolton women after the state pension age was raised without them knowing. 

In 1995, the Conservative Government raised the state pension age for women from 60 to 65 in efforts to make them equal with men. 

However, many of the women in the cohort, those born between April 6, 1950 and April 5, 1960, were not made aware of the changes until they reached their state pension age. 

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman ruled last week that there was maladministration in the DWP's communication about the changes. 

The regulator cannot force any changes to be made, but has asked Parliament to "urgently intervene" in order to agree a "remedy" for those affected. 

The Bolton News: WASPI protestorsWASPI protestors (Image: Andrew Milligan/PA)

Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI), a campaign group which aims to raise awareness of women in this situation, says that hundreds of thousands of women are suffering financial hardship, with not enough time to re-plan for retirement. 

WASPI recently released estimates for the number of potentially eligible women in each constituency in England and Wales. 

For all three Bolton constituencies at the next General Election, Bolton West, Bolton North East, and Bolton South and Walkden, there are an estimated 16,620 women in the borough that could be eligible. 

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In Bolton West there are 5,650, in Bolton North East there are 5,770 and in Bolton South and Walkden, there are 5,200. 

In nearby Leigh and Atherton, there are 5,800 potentially eligible women, in Bury South there are 5,140, in Bury North there are 5,590, in Worsley and Eccles there are 5,290 and in Salford there are 4,060. 

The Bolton News: Bernie Gallagher, the Secretary of BDPABernie Gallagher, the Secretary of BDPA (Image: Newsquest)

Many of the members of Bolton and District Pensioners Association (BDPA) were and are affected by the changes. 

Bernie Gallagher, Secretary of BDPA, said: "We encourage people to petition and give an update at our meetings every month. There is a good percentage of those women affected that attend our meetings. 

"It was a massive maladministration. Clearly it was a change of policy and they didn't inform people, that is a basic requirement, to inform people of changes in any organisation. 

"As it stands at the moment we are putting pressure on MPs. We are hoping to draw up a manifesto from our organisation, I am pretty sure WASPI will be in there.

"We are calling on General Election candidates to uphold the ombudsman's report and to encourage parliamentary debate on it." 

She added: "The ombudsman has essentially left it with Parliament, which is unlikely to do anything until the next General Election."

MPs from all sides of the Commons urged Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride to provide details of a compensation scheme for Waspi women as quickly as possible.