HC Deb 24 January 2000 vol 343 c91W
Mr. Õpik

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) when the Government plan to introduce free television licences for pensioners over the age of 75 years; [106551]

(2) what mechanism the Government intend to put in place to ensure that (a) pensioners aged over 75 years who have previously purchased a television licence are reimbursed for the months still to run after they become eligible for a free licence and (b) pensioners who have purchased a television licence less than a year before turning 75 are reimbursed for the months still to run. [106552]

Janet Anderson

My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced in his pre-Budget statement on 9 November 1999,Official Report, columns 883–91, that people aged 75 or over will receive their television licence free of charge from this autumn. The Government intend to announce shortly the precise starting date and details of how the scheme will operate. We anticipate that the scheme will incorporate arrangements for refunds in respect of unexpired licences.