Increases to national living and minimum wages from April 2020


The National Living Wage will increase from £8.21 to £8.72 per hour from April 1, 2020.

The rate applies to those aged 25 and over,

The National Minimum Wage increases, due to come in to effect on the same date, are

6.5% increase from £7.70 to £8.20 for 21-24 year olds

A 4.9% increase from £6.15 to £6.45 for 18-20 year olds

A 4.6% increase from £4.35 to £4.55 for Under 18s

A 6.4% increase from £3.90 to £4.15 for Apprentices

According to a government announcement today nearly 3 million workers will benefit from the increases.

The new rates are due to a recommendation from the Low Pay Commission which consulted stakeholders such as unions, businesses and academics.

In September the Chancellor pledged to increase the NLW towards a new target of two-thirds of median earnings by 2024, provided economic conditions allow, which, on current forecasts, would make it around £10.50 per hour.

The government aims to expand the reach of the National Living Wage to cover workers aged 23 and over from April 2021, and to those aged 21 and over within five years. This is expected to benefit around 4 million low paid workers.

County councillor Karen Constantine said although the rise was welcome more needs to be done.

She said: “I welcome the raise in the national minimum wage. But for Thanet it simply doesn’t address our poorly performing labour market and ingrained coastal poverty. Not enough is being done by either of our local conservative MPs or by conservative dominated Kent County Council, whose annual budget is £1.5billion. We need to see a real living wage implemented as a matter of urgency, I remind both of our Thanet MPs of their recent election pledge to raise the NMW to £10.50 per hour.

“The TUC, Trades Union Congress quite rightly argue for the abolishment of age based wage rates and point out that millions of people are experiencing increased employment insecurity, work intensification, new forms of surveillance, and have a lack of voice in the workplace.
“As Ramsgate’s County Councillor I’m calling for urgent investment in Ramsgate to bring a halt to increasing poverty. We don’t need vanity projects like the proposed railway station at Cliffsend. Nor can our community wait for ‘jam’ tomorrow jobs at Manston. We need action now.
“I was recently shocked to hear of a contract worth almost £55,000 to promote the Turner Contemporary was ‘outsourced’ to a design company and printers outside of Thanet. I will be raising this with KCC Leader Cllr Roger Gough. As a minimum KCC should seek to support our local employment prospects by awarding contracts to businesses in Thanet. KCC can and must do more to improve the economic outlook for Thanet.”


  1. This seems a lot less than promised at the Election.

    It doesn’t answer the problem that more and more workers are finding themselves down on the Minimum Wage and having to claim Universal Credit to bulk out their income. This only raises income to pretty dire levels anyway.

    Universal Credit is a massive subsidy to employers who don’t have to pay proper wages so can hire more staff. Which explains some of the positive-looking employment figures.
    But we need to remember that this subsidy to the workforce is mostly eaten up by rent increases to the landlords who know they are onto a good thing and will just absorb any wage rises into their own income.
    So the taxpaying workforce ie. ALL OF US , are subsidising each other through the tax system. Poorly-paid workers are being helped out from the taxes of those only slightly better off.

    But we ALL end up struggling and unable to buy the things that the economy produces, so workplaces such as shops and small factories are constantly closing down as “nobody’s got any money these days!”

    So the people who worked in those shops etc then have to find another job, back onto minimum wages again. Maybe having to rely on foodbanks to tide them over as Universal Credit is deliberately payed weeks after the claim goes in.
    More worry, more stress, more disappointed children at Christmas. But, we can’t complain. The country voted for this for another 5 years. So we must be enjoying our desperate lives more than I thought!

    • Cost to rent your average 2 bed flat in cliftonville in 2002 was 450 pcm, inflation over that period would put that today at 720 pcm without the added legislative costs also added in the meantime, average rent for a 2 bed in cliftonville today is around 625.
      But don’t let a few real world figures get in the way of your political ideals.
      TDC paid out over 2 million to Paramount Property Services for its emergency housing needs, the rise of air bnb and wealthier owner occupiers moving into the area along with the anti landlord agenda have been the primary cause of this emergency housing need.
      Owner occupied property is under occupied in 50% of homes as against 15% in the private rented sector, so as landlords sell up not only are tenants displaced by incomers, but overall fewer people live in the properties sold/bought.
      Acouple with one earner doing 20 hours minimum wage , 2 kids and renting will have around 1725 a month coming in. Not bad really over £21 an hour take home pay , for example serving cheap unhealthy food. The system is rotten from top to bottom

  2. I don’t see what “emergency housing need” and “serving cheap unhealthy food” has to do with a rise in the living wage?

    • It arose from the assumption that any pay rise would be passed on by landlords putting up rents, the main cause of rent rises is lack of supply, the reduction of which (supply)has led to greater homelessness ( hence increase in emergency housing provision).The reference to fast food was an example of minimum wage work that actually pays very well indeed once all factors are accounted for. ( i’d be very happy to earn 21/hr before deductions let alone after)

      • I’m sorry. You’ve completely lost ne. Are you saying that people who serve unhealthy fast food get paid £21 per hour?
        How would a pay rise be passed on by landlords? They’re not getting the pay rise??

        • Read the last 3 lines of my first comment, regarding the 21/ hour. Then have a play with a benefits calculator such as
          The assertion (made by keefogs) i replied to was that an increase in the minmum wage would be effectively a rise that would benefit landlords as they’d put up their rents accordingly.

  3. Apparently, the national average weekly pay in 2019 was over £550 per week. £8.72 national living wage equals £322 a week. I know quite a few people trying to live on low incomes, but don’t qualify for any benefits. This in an area that has given the Tories at least another 5 years of ripping you off while their paymasters in the city make a killing. There’s none so daft as folk to quote my dear old mum.

    • But you need to take into account the effect of tax credits, working tax credits, child benefit, local housing allowance etc to determine a households total income into the home.

      • Too many assumptions local chap, My point was that many DON’T qualify for any of the so called benefits you mention. Low income, high rentals, sounds perfect territory for a Conservative government. Still, as I say for some reason we have swallowed the Brexit con job, let’s just see shall we?

        • Quite agree but under the freedom of movement rules the country has had to restrict the extent to which benefits are handed out, young, single and childless couples being those most affected, or else there would be pretty much unlimited call on resources.
          There’s nothing inherently wrong with freedom of movement and our welfare system WAS fit for purpose, but combine the two and along with our allowing immediate entry in 2004 rather than opting for the 7 year delay (like most of the rest of europe) the draw factors to the uk became huge, but we did’nt have the money to build enough houses etc to cope, then on top we have pretty much unrestricted migration from outside the eu as well.
          Its all very well having government policy but it needs to be balanced.
          In the 90’s it was common for people in their early 20’s to rent once they’d started working full time, for the vast majority this is no longer possible, they do the same work , earn the same wage, but don’t qualify for the same benefits and so have very limited options when it comes to independent living.
          As i said earlier the system is a mess, neither brand of politics will resolve the problem as both are too wedded to its own ideals. So the electorate has chosen the rosette likely to do the least damage.
          Politics has become so dominated by the loud calls from the minotprities on the extremes that the majority in the middle ground are forgotten, until they cast their vote, at which point those who’ve been shouting loudest get the right hump.
          Google Dominic Frisby, have a listen to a range of his stuff, he probably win’t appeal to many, but he speaks clearly and in a calm manner, many could learn from that.

  4. Why is there an age differential for the minimum wage when basics eg food cost the same to buy whatever age you are?

  5. Mr Local Chap have you ever claimed any of these benefits? Probably not! Your £21/hour assumes that they would all collectively accumulate, which of course is not the case.I think a more reliable guide would be to consult the CAB or Shelter and I think they might demolish your fond assumptions over benefits.
    Please stop all this justifying the unjustifiable.Thanet has a deprivation problem,not because the people are somehow lacking, but because of the lack of employment and economic opportunities,poor housing, fuel poverty,poor health and poor policy making. Thanet is a left behind piece of coastal rust belt and needs long term investment, not blame, not slogans and not one off trick pony schemes.
    Well LC, your mob won the election, now it is time to deliver prosperity for all and not just a tiny minority.We shall see how well the new Govt does; I will watch and wait with great anticipation

    • Far from it, the example in my first post is typical, add on the other benefits it triggers (prescription, dental etc) it all adds up. Far from a kings ransom but surprises most people. As I also said in my first post the system is a mess. Without doubt thanet has issues, having been used as a dumping ground for many of life’s less fortunate being one of them, they bring with them some very deep seated issues for which no government wishes to spend the resources to resolve , rather they are left so do as they will in what has become a problem area, drugs are rife and the problem growing at an alarming rate, but as a society we choose not to pursue and punish those that carry out this trade,our geographic location and poor catchment area means businesses here struggle.
      I’ve only lived here since ‘87 but the decline in that time has been considerable, no party has made any significant inroads into the areas problems, I really don’t see the current government achieving much either.
      I’m in favour of manston returning as a freight,maintenance and training facility. Thanet parkway is at long last a piece of forward thinking, tic needs to be put into special measures and a professional body found that is capable of running thanet. The EKH fiasco alone should be enough to merit it, where the funding will come from to put all the problems right is beyond me.
      I don’t have a “lot” it’s just that at the election they were the least worst option in my opinion.

  6. I note that a person on the increased living wage, working a 40 hour week, would gross a little over £18,000 pa.
    Boris Johnson has jetted off to the West Indies, staying in a place that costs £20,000 per week.
    Good to know that we’re all in it together.

  7. If Manston becomes an airport the environmental and health problems in Thanet will be very much increased. Thanet Parkway is a ridiculous piece of KCC fantasy- we already have 7 railway stations in Thanet and the catchment map for this proposed station is mostly agricultural land. Far better to invest in major improvements for the existing stations and for buses, even trams, which serve all parts of Thanet.

    As for Mr. Johnson- his party is certainly NOT for the many, but for the very very few. What the Tories have done in the past 10 years shows us this.

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