"The poll by the Local Government Association found that town halls are increasingly withholding support for all but those with the most severe needs, as Britain's ageing population puts their budgets under increasing strain.
This means that thousands of pensioners and disabled people must either pay for their own care - and scrimp on food and heating - or remain effectively trapped in their own homes with no help to carry out basic tasks such as eating or washing.
The LGA, which represents local authorities across the country, is calling for the Government to use a forthcoming Green Paper to simplify the social care system and increase its funding to ensure those in need are not denied help."
"Gordon Lishman, Director General of Age Concern, added: "These figures are further evidence that the care system is coming apart at the seams and needs urgent reform.
"It is disgraceful that people who need care and can't afford to pay are being told they simply won't get any help. It is positively Orwellian that these cuts are being delivered through a process known as 'Fair Access to Care Services'."