They say the best provision for old age is education and it seems that piece of advice is being taken on board more than ever by people in their twilight years.

At the Open University 11 per cent of students are now aged over 55 and three per cent are over 65.

Margaret Bone, who is aged in her 60s, recently graduated from the University of Bath with a a foundation degree in funeral services.

Upon doing so Margaret, who lives in Braintree, became one of only ten funeral directors in the country to achieve the highest qualification in the industry.