BBC to scrap free TV licences for millions of over 75s

Pensioners will have to pay for their licences next year.
Pensioners will have to pay for their licences next year.

Millions of pensioners who have received a free TV licence will now have to pay for it, the BBC has announced.

The BBC will scrap the free licences for over-75s, but households with one person who receives Pension Credit will be be eligible to claim.

Up to 3.7 million pensioners currently receive a free TV licence.

The BBC said that the ruling, which comes into force in June 2020, is because of "fairness" and comes after a consultation, in which 52 per cent of 190,000 asked were in favour of abolishing free licences.

Responding to the news, Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford MP Yvette Cooper said: “It is completely appalling that the Tory Government is allowing this to happen.

"I’m calling on Ministers to urgently step in and halt this unfair plan - especially as they promised not to let it happen.

"Nearly 5,000 pensioner households in this constituency are going to be hit.

"Many elderly people really rely on the television as a lifeline, especially if they are lonely.

"This adds up to three quarters of a million pounds in total being taken off pensioners in our towns. It’s completely unfair on people who have worked hard all their lives.”