MORE THAN ONE third of all pensioners living in Leitrim live on their own, according to new figures compiled based on census data.
The data, which looked at the make-up of households in Ireland, found significantly high levels of rural isolation among older people across the country.
Roscommon, Longford, Mayo and Cavan all recorded the next-highest rates of people aged 65 and older living on their own after Leitrim, which topped the list with 34.13 per cent.
Dublin, which has a population of just over one million people, had the largest actual number of pensioners living on their own with just over 35,500.
More than half of people aged over 85 in Waterford city and Cork city live on their own, closely followed by Leitrim, Monaghan, Louth and Clare.
Fingal in north county Dublin recorded the lowest percentage of pensioners living alone with just over 22 per cent. South Dublin, Kildare, Meath and Wicklow also had low levels of people living on their own.
The figures were compiled by the All-Island Research Observatory (AIRO), based at NUI Maynooth, using figures from the Central Statistics Office on Census 2011.
ALONE, a charity which supports older people in need, has warned about the loneliness and isolation experienced by many people across Ireland who may not have the support of friends or family to visit them.
The figures can be seen in this interactive chart by AIRO. Mobile users can see the chart here.