Updated: Sep 3, 2020
The National Pensioners’ Convention staged ‘pensioner protests’ across the UK today (30th July) in an 11th hour bid to save the free TV licence for over all 75’s. NPC members tore up their TV licences and waved banners in London, Newcastle, Oxford, and Norwich to try and get the government to stop the BBC imposing the £157.50 licence fee on our oldest citizens from this Saturday, 1st August. Despite the coronavirus threat, they put on their masks and braved protests at the gates of Downing Street and outside BBC regional offices this morning, with more planned for Liverpool and Belfast in the run up to Saturday. Jan Shortt, General Secretary of the NPC said: “Thank you so much to the many NPC members who supported our protests across the country today at the unjust scrapping of free TV licence for all over 75’s. “The fittest and most able came out of lockdown to show their anger and disgust at the axing of this vital universal entitlement – a particularly cruel thing to do during the pandemic, when many isolated older people are still afraid to go out.” Jan added: “The NPC wants to thank Lord Foulkes and members of the House of Lords for making a final attempt to get the government and the BBC to find a way of retaining the free licence for all those over 75. We can only hope that the Prime Minister and the BBC Director General will heed all of our calls and find a way to reverse this decision which will cause so much distress to our oldest and most vulnerable.” NPC protests took place today, Thursday, 30th July:
London - 10 Downing Street, 11:15am to 12 noon.
Norwich - BBC Studios at the Norwich Forum, from 11.30am.
Oxford - Bonn Square, from 12 noon.
Newcastle - BBC (Pink Palace) in Newcastle, 11.00 am until 11.30 am
North London - Hornsey Pensioners, BBC TV Tower, Alexandra Palace, 11.00am to 11.30am.
And also at:
Merseyside - Merseyside Pensioners Association online Zoom protest at 7pm.
Northern Ireland - Static demo of 30 people outside BBC Belfast on Friday, 31st (time tbc).
Ayrshire, Scotland - All day protest in Irvine town centre, Saturday, 1st August.
The NPC is also continuing to push its social media campaign encouraging supporters to retweet the NPC’s message on its Twitter page to the Prime Minister. NPC members who are unable to go out because they are still shielding are asked to send pictures and videos of their own home-based protests to firstname.lastname@example.org ENDS *For more information about the NPC protests contact NPC General Secretary Jan Shortt, on 07773 051210. *The National Pensioners Convention was set up in 1979 to champion the rights and welfare of the UK’s older people. It now represents more than 1.5 million people in over 1,000 different organisations across the UK and holds an Annual Convention – a pensioners’ parliament - to debate issues affecting older people.
To view pictures of the demonstrations, go to the link below