BBC using £169 million to 'chase' and 'target' TV licence dodgers

The BBC has used £169million chasing TV licence dodgers in what has been branded a "blatant waste of money". The BBC are paying logistics company Whistl and Royal Mail £33.8million a year for five years to deliver letters to those suspected of not paying.

The spending is equivalent to nearly 200,000 licence fees a year and Joanna Marchong, from the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “Struggling households will be furious with this blatant waste of money by the Beeb. Auntie has opted for a contract with an exorbitant price tag, in an attempt to prop up the out-dated licence fee.

“By scrapping the hated tv tax and replacing it with a subscription service there would be no need for these threatening letters.” A TV Licensing spokesperson said: “While we continue to encourage customers to move to paperless communication and e-licences, letters remain a highly cost-effective way of reminding people they may need a TV Licence, and these costs are driven by postage charges.

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“The contract amount covers five years and will ensure best value to efficiently collect the licence fee.” Tristan Kirk, from the Evening Standard, has recently been shining a light on the unfair targeting of some fare-dodgers via Twitter/X.

In one tweet, he wrote: "A woman from Greater Manchester with a psychotic disorder who fell behind on her bills during a manic episode. Prosecuted for not paying her TV Licence. It's #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek. In the Single Justice Procedure, prosecutors don't see the mitigation.

"Not much awareness there." He fumed: "The magistrate obviously did see the mitigation & gave her a one-month conditional discharge That's a sign that they considered this a needless prosecution But the woman still gets criminal conviction plus £66 costs."

The journalist went on and wrote: "It's time for change, to stop cases like this getting to court."