John Mann says more than 7,000 Bassetlaw pensioners could be affected if free TV licenses for over-75s are scrapped

John Mann MP
John Mann MP

This week, there was a debate in Parliament about TV licences for over-75 year olds, writes John Mann MP.

Last year, I publicised the Government’s consultation on scrapping the free TV license for the over-75s

Even though thousands of people participated in the consultation, the BBC has proposed that from June 2020, it will now be charging users to pay £150 per year for a TV license.

This decision was made for the BBC to save money.

This will have a huge effect on people in Bassetlaw.

If these plans go ahead, thousands of local people over the age of 75 in this community will lose out.

It is estimated that 7,400 homes could lose their TV licence and the overall cost to all households affected would be more than £1 million.

I totally oppose this proposal as I know it will have damaging consequences for some of the most vulnerable in society.

Last November, I wrote to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to ask them to re-consider this decision.

The minister responded the Government devolved responsibility for the free TV licence policy, and the cost, to the BBC.

This will save the Government £745 million across the UK in 2021-22.

I totally oppose these plans as I know the drastic effects they will have on those living in the community.

This week, I voted to stop the TV licence being scrapped and will continue to fight for this in Parliament.

It was also announced this week that the number of GPs in Britain has fallen for the first time in 50 years.

This fall means that the average doctor now has 125 more patients to look after and this has meant that there has been in a huge increase in waiting times both in A&E but also for routine appointments.

This is no surprise given the shortage of GPs compared to five years ago.

It is very useful to hear about your experiences, good and bad about the NHS and this gives me a lot more ammunition in fighting for your corner.