Pensioners at a residential care home in Worcester have been caught in the crossfire of a disagreement between Platform Housing Group and the BBC. Some residents are so worried that they will be slapped with a hefty fine that they have chosen to pay the fee themselves although it should be included in the cost of their rent.
Worried residents at Himbleton House in the St John’s area of Worcester have been left without TV after receiving “threatening” letters from the BBC demanding payment.
Residents claim they are too frightened to watch TV although the licence fee should be covered by their rent.
Although their landlord Platform Housing Group says it is speaking to BBC Licensing about the issue, one of the resident’s relatives told Worcester News that this has not reassured them.
She said tenants won’t even watch TV in the communal lounge because they are too scared that they are breaking the law.
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Platform Housing says it has paid the fee and is sorry that some of the residents feel too scared to watch TV.
A spokesperson for the housing group told Express.co.uk the problem is down to the way TV Licensing processes payments and not anything that they have done.
Hayley Murphy, retirement living operations manager at Platform Housing Group, said they were working on resolving the situation as soon as possible.
Ms Murphy said: “We are aware that a small minority of our residents are being contacted by TV Licensing with regards to the scheme not having a concessionary TV licence in place.”
She continued: “We are doing all we can to establish the reason and resolve the situation and are in regular contact with those affected regarding this.”
A spokesperson for TV Licensing said: “We understand that this residence has had difficulty renewing their ARC scheme (Accommodation for Residential Care) licences.
“We have already been in touch directly with this residence to resolve this and hope to have the matter fully resolved as soon as possible.”
The spokesperson added that anyone aged over 75 who lives in accommodation covered by an Accommodation for Residential Care scheme should receive a free TV licence, while those under 75 only have to pay £7.50.