A pensioner has slammed the BBC’s decision to scrap the licence fee waiver for over 75s, saying that she would rather go to prison than pay the corporation £157 a year.
Ivy Siegfried. 82, from Inverclyde in Scotland, told This Morning host Rochelle Humes and Dermot O’Leary that she would happily go behind bars as at least she’d get ‘three meals a day, a room and a free TV’.
‘I don’t like it, I do not like it, they’re going against pensioners, we’ve got the lowest pension in Europe,. I’m not a television person, now the BBC are sc***ing them for £157 a year for c***, yeah I’m angry.
When asked by Rochelle how it would affect her personally, Ivy replied: ‘For me not a lot, to have to pay means nothing, I can pay it.
‘But I know a lot of people on the breadline! Age UK, sent over 600,000 signatures to Boris Johnson regarding this.
‘Some pensioners take the television as a friend, it’s like having someone in the home. Why should we have to pay for someone to sit and talk about sports and get £2million a year?’
The pensioner was referring to Gary Lineker, who is the BBC’s best-paid star, earning £1.75million a year for hosting Match of the Day.
‘Our pensions are the lowest of any developed country, that’s disgusting,’ Ivy added.
‘I don’t like the idea of being means tested, I’m still paying tax at 82-years-old.
‘I would rather go to prison than pay. I don’t mind going! If I go to prison I’ll get three meals a day, I’ll get a room, I’ll get free TV in there!
Earlier the month, the corporation announce that more than three million households will face paying the £157.50 fee next month after controversial plans to end free licences for pensioners over the age threshold were given the green light.
But the move has sparked criticism, including from the Prime Minister, whose official spokesperson said: ‘This is the wrong decision. We recognise the value of free TV licences for over-75s and believe that they should be funded by the BBC.’
Journalist Madeline Grant, who spoke via video link in central London, told the show that she thought pensioners should be means tested, arguing that she doesn’t see why a ’20-year-old warning minimum wage should be subsiding Judi Dench’.
‘I don’t think anyone should be paying a licence fee, but I have a lot of sympathy for what Ivy says, but I think it should be means tested.
‘Through a combination of the recession and stagflation and the housing crisis the average pensioner household is £20 a week better off than the average working household,’ she added.
Viewers loved Ivy’s passion and vigour, taking to Twitter saying they hoped she gets her own show.
‘Ivy’s having NONE of it!’ said one.
‘Watching This Morning during annual leave is my guilty pleasure. Anyone else totally in love with 82 year old Ivy from Inverclyde?’ added another.
‘Give Ivy her own show! (probably not on the BBC though),’ said a third.
‘I love it when older people are fuming. Ivy is proper angry,’ commented one Twitter user.
‘Ivy a Scottish pensioner talking on This Morning about the TV licence was awesome!’ said another.