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BBC could ask older viewers for contributions

BBC New Broadcasting HouseThe BBC is considering asking pensioners to waive their right to not paying the licence fee and make a voluntary contribution.

The UK pubcaster agreed last year to foot the bill for the over-75s licence fee from 2020 at an estimated annual cost of £650 million (US$932 million).

It is now thought to want celebrities including Helen Mirren and Michael Parkinson to front a campaign designed to persuade older viewers to make a contribution.

The BBC is preparing a report on ways to attract voluntary contributions, with the findings to be released later this year. The campaign for said contributions would likely then start in 2017.

This comes as the heated debate over the BBC licence fee continues. It was thought to have been settled last year, with the Corporation footing the bill for over-75s in return for an inflation-linked fee. Government officials, however, subsequently made clear that the final settlement has yet to be reached.

The BBC has yet to officially comment on its plan to reach out to the over-75s.

Tags: BBC, licence fee