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BBC under fire as 1.7 million pensioners will feel squeeze of TV licence cut

“If the BBC managers can pay themselves big fat pensions, why can’t they fulfil their pledge to guarantee the licence fee for over-75s?”

Steve Webb, the former pensions minister and director of policy at Royal London, told The Daily Telegraph: “All the additional benefits of the triple lock is being wiped out by TV licence change. The whole point of the triple lock is that pensioners keep pace with the working age population. And for the over-75s this simply won’t happen next year.”

Mr Webb said the licence fee cut “indirectly helps the government with the cost of the triple lock”, adding: “The pension rise will be great news for those not affected by the TV licence changes.

“But there is a sting in the tail for around 1.7 million single people over 75 who will experience a squeeze in their standard of living once they have paid over £150 for a TV licence next year.”

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has previously said it is “disappointed with the BBC’s decision not to continue free licences for the over-75s”.

Boris Johnson has also said the broadcaster should “cough up” the money to pay for them. A BBC spokesman said: “The Government decided to stop funding free TV licences for all over-75s, and Parliament gave the BBC the clear responsibility to decide and consult on the future policy.

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