BBC raked in £250m from licence fees for over-75s last year

THE BBC raked in an extra £250million in licence fees after over-75s were forced to pay the annual fee.

The scheme used to be free for people in the age bracket but this was scrapped last year.

The BBC made an extra £250m in licence feesCredit: PA

OAPs were instead asked to cough up £157.50 – leading to carnage as a grey army formed to battle the broadcaster’s demands.

But the BBC’s Annual Report has revealed they made £3,750million from the annual TV licence.

This is a rise of £250million – despite the broadcaster making less content this year due to the pandemic.

The row was sparked last year when free TV licences for over-75s were scrapped last summer, causing extra costs for millions of households.

The decision was met with widespread dismay with petitions calling for a U-turn attracting hundreds of thousands of signatures.

Tensions were further escalated when the BBC threatened to send enforcers to OAP’s homes after 260,000 refused to pay the fee.

Capita, the firm that enforces licence fee payment, will make “customer care visits” to homes this autumn.

Lord Botham, who is campaigning against the over-75s charge, accused the BBC of using “Orwellian language”.

He also claimed they were intimidating the elderly by “threatening to send round the boys”.

Dennis Reed, director of the Silver Voices campaign group, called on the Government to step in earlier this year.

He said: “The BBC is calling the people carrying out these visits ‘customer support officers’ but their job is to enforce payment. They will be asking people why they haven’t got a licence,” said Mr Reed.

“Clearly, the BBC is not going to do anything other than enforce the licence fee. It is now time for the government to act.

“I’m sure they don’t want to see senior citizens in their 80s and 90s, who have paid tax throughout their lives, fined up to £1,000 and carted off to jail.”

Raging Inverclyde pensioner tells This Morning ‘I’d rather go to jail than pay TV licence’ as free service for over 75s scrapped

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