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Tuesday 14th July 2020

Piers Morgan rages as woman in tears over BBC scrapping free TV licences

He branded the decision an "absolute disgrace"

Piers Morgan has slammed the BBC for making the decision to scrap TV licences for millions of people over 75.

On Monday, it was announced that from June 2020 around 3.7 million households which previously received a free licence will now have to pay for one.

Speaking about the BBC's decision on today's Good Morning Britain, Piers claimed the broadcasting company is "swimming in cash" and branded the move "disgusting".

Piers claimed the broadcasting company is "swimming in cash" (Credit: ITV)

Read more: TV licence fees for over-75s will be means-tested

He raged: "I am absolutely hopping mad about this TV licence business. I'm hopping mad on behalf of 3.7 million pensioners who have now woken up to this.

"That number includes all the D-Day veterans, the ones who we have just spent a week saluting."

He continued: "It’s absolutely disgusting. I blame the government of the day which four years ago, signaled that the responsibility would fall to the BBC.

"I absolutely blame the BBC as well. They might be rivals of ours, but they are rivals who are paid for by the public purse."

Later in the programme, Piers continued his rant.

He said: "They're all over 75, we just paid tribute to 300 of these extraordinary people, saluting their valiant D-Day heroism... And this is their reward?

"Within hours of them getting home, they are now going to be charged £154 to watch television in this country.

"They can blame the government all they like, the BBC is swimming in cash."

He added: "Swimming in cash. 106 executives earning £150,000 or more, think about that."

Piers branded the decision an "absolute disgrace" (Credit: ITV)

Insisting the BBC shouldn't get rid of the free service for elderly, Piers said: "You have lived through the second World War and unless you are absolutely on the poverty line, most of these pensioners are now being punished.

"£154, absolutely disgusting, it is one of the most snivelling little things I can imagine.

"For many people [watching TV] is the only window into the world and this is what we do for them, really BBC?

"You're going to tax D-Day veterans to watch telly - shame on the BBC for doing this, I think they should be forced to do a U-turn."

Piers and co-star Susanna Reid later spoke to a viewer called Josephine, who broke down in tears as she branded the BBC's decision "disgraceful".

Josephine said her husband has dementia and lives in a residential care home and she now faces the prospect of having to pay the licence fee for her husband.

She said: "Well it means an awful lot to me, because that would be £25 a month coming out of our joint pension.

"We’re self-funding in residential care home, he gets no pension credit, they’ve taken all his attendance allowance when he went in.

"So what happens to people like us then? I have to pay that. He watches the TV most of the day bless him. So you’re taking away that but you’re also penalising me. Their penalising my husband for being sick."

Continuing to slam the BBC, Piers said: "It’s absolutely disgraceful."

Susanna added: "It’s an outrage to someone like you, it’s reduced you to tears this morning because of this decision. My heart absolutely breaks for you."

Licence fees were being reviewed by the BBC (Credit: Pexels)

Read more: Len Goodman blasts plans to scrap free TV licences for pensioners

It comes after Chairman of the BBC Sir David Clementi said: "Linking a free licence for over-75s to Pension Credit was the leading reform option. It protects the poorest over-75s, while protecting the services that they, and all audiences, love.

"It is the fairest and best outcome. It is one we can implement and endorse. This is an outcome that is the fairest possible in difficult circumstances."

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