D-Day veterans join armed forces personnel on stage at the D-Day 75
Veterans

BBC To Contact Veterans' Charities After Axing Free TV Licences For Over-75s

The benefit will be restricted only to those who claim pension credit from June next year.

D-Day veterans join armed forces personnel on stage at the D-Day 75

Labour MP Ian Lucas said the BBC should create a special opt-out for veterans who took part in the Normandy invasion (Picture: MOD).

The BBC is to contact veterans' charities to discuss changes to the free TV licence fees.

The benefit will be restricted only to those who claim pension credit from June next year after the corporation said it will struggle to manage the financial burden it is due to take over from the Government.

The BBC's Director of Policy said 85,000 people were consulted, but that they were "not sure" any veteran charities directly responded.

During a session of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, Ian Lucas MP urged Director-General Lord Tony Hall to reconsider the decision.

He referred to a 93-year-old Normandy veteran in his constituency, Ted Edwards, who is having the benefit removed.

Lord Hall said: "To balance the fairness to people over 75 like Mr Edwards, how we work through and hold a concession which is fair to them, while also being fair to the majority of licence fee payers who don't want and would have to fund the £750 million if the concession was to carry on, and those two fairnesses have been the things we're trying to balance.

"And it seemed to the board that the right way forward was to attach the concession to pension credit - that's not our determination of poverty among pensioners, but it's not up for us to determine what the poverty level is."