When you wish upon a star!

The BBC is to urge pensioners to voluntarily give up their free licence fee to save the corporation and protect their favourite programmes.

The BBC is to ask the over-75s to opt out of their entitlement to free licence fees, hinting that it will help secure the future of television or radio programmes.

A senior executive at the corporation said the elderly will be invited to pay at least £145.50 each year to the “cost of the BBC’s services” after it takes over responsibility for funding free licence fees in the years to come.

James Heath, director of policy at the BBC, said: “We will give those eligible households an opportunity to voluntarily pay for a TV licence and so make a contribution to the cost of the BBC’s services.”

Members of staff at the corporation have regularly spoken out about the threat to programming on screen and on air if further funding cuts are imposed, suggesting licence fee-payers’ favourite shows could suffer.

It was later stated that both the reporter, and James Heath, managed to keep straight faces until the end of the interview!

13 comments for “When you wish upon a star!

  1. Old Geezer
    July 13, 2015 at 2:42 pm

    I have a better idea. The senior executives at the BBC take a large cut in their over inflated salaries, and also reduce the ridiculous payments made to their so called stars.

  2. Frank
    July 13, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    I think the correspondence might go something like:

    Dear Frank

    Would you like to give me £145.50?

    Dear James

    No. Have a nice day.

  3. Justin
    July 13, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    Ha. More likely they;ll be invited NOT to pay (i.e. opt in by default)

  4. Mudplugger
    July 13, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    All that’s happened is that the Government has cunningly shuffled one future ‘nasty’ onto someone else’s plate. The BBC has been told to keep the free 75+ license for the next 5 years: soon after that, the BBC will decide to abandon it, what a surprise – it has then become a BBC decision, not a Government one, so the Chancellor’s off the hook with all those nice old wrinkly voters, “Not my fault, Doris, blame the Beeb and keep voting for me”.
    Next up, shuffle the free bus-pass job onto local councils or even the transport companies, then shift the Winter Fuel Allowance onto the gas, electricity and oil suppliers.
    Job done – all of ‘Brown’s Bribes’ deleted without any of the accompanying political pain in the Daily Mail.

  5. john in cheshire
    July 13, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    Mudplugger, you could well be right; it’s devious enough and something politicians wouldn’t hesitate to do. I don’t have a TV licence because I don’t watch live TV but if the licence is still free when I reach 75 it’s one the first things I’ll apply for, hopefully depleting the bbc’s income a little.

  6. wiggia
    July 13, 2015 at 4:37 pm

    What was missed when this was announced is that the decriminalising for non payment of license fees has been shelved, quietly……
    As for a reply when asked by James Heath for a voluntary contribution it starts with b………………

  7. July 14, 2015 at 9:01 am

    Do all the refugees en route to the UK know they are going to have to pay the BBC licence fee?

  8. james higham
    July 14, 2015 at 10:53 am

    an opportunity to voluntarily pay for a TV licence


    • Mudplugger
      July 14, 2015 at 11:39 am

      Yup, nothing like a split infinitive to make one sigh.

      • Old Geezer
        July 15, 2015 at 12:23 pm

        Some years ago Oxford University declared that a split infinitive is sometimes acceptable. Do keep up!!!!

        • Mudplugger
          July 15, 2015 at 1:33 pm

          Today is not one of those times: tomorrow won’t be either.

        • July 15, 2015 at 2:20 pm

          To wantonly split an infinitive, to wreak havoc with a phrasal verb or indeed even to misplace a negative is not something up with which I shall put.

  9. David
    July 15, 2015 at 12:18 pm

    If I were 75 I would write to say no because you are biased – ha ha!

Comments are closed.