Television Licences: Older People

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 23rd July 2020.

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Photo of Ruth Jones Ruth Jones Labour, Newport West

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will protect free tv licenses for over 75's in (a) Newport West, (b) Wales, and (c) the UK.

Photo of John Whittingdale John Whittingdale Minister of State

The government is deeply disappointed that the BBC has chosen not to extend the over 75 licence fee concession. We recognise the value of free TV licences for over-75s and believe they should be funded by the BBC.

However, the Digital Economy Act, 2017, provides the BBC is responsible for the concession, not the Government. The BBC must look urgently at how it can use its substantial licence fee income to support older people and deliver for UK audiences of all ages.

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