TV licence

Will Boris bail out the BBC in licence fee row?

The National Pensioners Convention has called on the government to fund over-75s’ licences (Credit: NPC)

On 10 June, the licence fee time bomb – primed by Chancellor Gordon Brown and set ticking by his successor George Osborne – duly exploded, as forecast back in February’s Television*.

By granting the over-75s a free TV licence (Brown) and then transferring the cost and responsibility from the government to the BBC (Osborne), the two chancellors locked the corporation in a no-win situation. Claire Enders, of Enders Analysis, argues that the deal was “illegitimate” and never affordable: “It was a lose-lose for the BBC, its viewers and listeners.”