'Scrap the licence fee! TaxPayers' Alliance blasts 'outdated' BBC tax on stretched homes


Ms Boxall insisted the move would help struggling Britons save some money as energy prices and the cost of living increase. The TaxPayers’ Alliance spokeswoman welcomed the “effective freeze” of the TV licence fee but insisted Boris Johnson should go further and completely get rid of the tax. She told GB News: “Operation Red Meat, we saw the first example of it this last week, which was the BBC licence fee freeze, effectively.

“Whilst that is good news for people but the Prime Minister should be going one step further and saying that we’re going to scrap the license fee.

“It’s an outdated model and I think that would actually help a lot of people that are struggling with their income at the moment, and struggling with this cost of living crisis.

“He hasn’t really gone for the full thing he could do.”

Ms Boxall continued: “I think that’s really where the Prime Minister is falling down, he’s thinking about these things but he’s not going ahead with the full extent he could be. 

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“He’s not really making some bold changes he promised.”

Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said last week the next announcement about the fee “will be the last” – indicating a different funding model could be introduced from 2028.

And she also announced the licence fee is to be frozen at £159 for two years, until 2024, after which it will rise in line with inflation for the following four years.

The Tory frontbencher’s announcement drew the ire of opposition politicians and staff at the BBC, with Labour’s shadow culture secretary Lucy Powell describing it as “cultural vandalism” and presenters Richard Bacon and Dan Walker criticising the comments.

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Scotland’s Culture Secretary Angus Robertson also hit out at the UK Government for what he described as an “ideologically driven” attack on the BBC.

“We need to be concerned about threats to the BBC and Channel 4 at the present time,” he told Holyrood’s Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee on Thursday.

A number of alternatives to the licence fee have been floated, including an opt-in subscription service similar to that used by streaming giants such as Netflix, the introduction of advertising, or a broadband levy.

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Scotland’s Culture Secretary Angus Robertson also hit out at the UK Government for what he described as an “ideologically driven” attack on the BBC.

“We need to be concerned about threats to the BBC and Channel 4 at the present time,” he told Holyrood’s Constitution, Europe, External Affairs and Culture Committee on Thursday.

A number of alternatives to the licence fee have been floated, including an opt-in subscription service similar to that used by streaming giants such as Netflix, the introduction of advertising, or a broadband levy..

Former BBC presenter David Dimbleby has suggested that the BBC licence fee should be linked to council tax to make it fairer as the Government questions future funding of the broadcaster.

The former Question Time host told BBC Radio 4’s the World At One programme: “The licence fee is something that I absolutely believe in, I don’t think you can have public service broadcasting without paying for it through the public purse in that way.

“But what I do think is the BBC should acknowledge that £159 paid by the poorest as well the richest is just unfair, it’s inequitable.

“And there’s a simple way in which the BBC can get on the front foot, which is by suggesting the licence fee figure, the gross figure of £159, should not be paid a flat rate by everybody but the richest should pay more and the poorest less. And the simple way of doing it would be to attach an element of the licence fee to the council tax band.”



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