Letters - July 18, 2019

Should better-off pensioners pay for their TV licence?
Should better-off pensioners pay for their TV licence?

The more well-off can afford licences

Apparently thousands of people have signed the petition against the BBC’s decision to remove free TV licences for over-75s, but there’s another side to this.

What about those over-75s who are so well-off they have an accountant to deal with their outgoings?

Those who won’t even notice a sum of £154.50 going out of their account - the likes of Sir Paul McCartney, Sir David Jason, Dame Judi Dench, some MPs and councillors and so on.

Jeremy Vine, on his Radio 2 show, when interviewing Caroline Abrahams of Age UK, asked her this question three times, but she avoided answering.

There are also many ordinary people who have two pensions so there has to be some cut-off to avoid those who can afford to pay getting a “freebie”.

In allowing anyone in receipt of Pension Credit to continue to receive the free licence, the BBC has at least made sure the right people are not penalised and those who can afford to pay for it, do so.

A Ward

Address supplied


Wyre needs to play bigger climate role

When it comes to the need to tackle climate change, the old saying that ‘you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink’, perfectly sums up the complacent attitude of Wyre Conservative and UKIP councillors.

With the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warning of an impending climate catastrophe unless countries take steps to limit global warming to 1.5C by 2030, Wyre Labour submitted a motion to July’s Full Council calling for decisive action to be taken to meet a net zero carbon emission target by 2030.

Although the climate emergency declaration was backed by all councillors, when it came to the key issue, Wyre Conservatives, with support from Fleetwood’s UKIP councillors, disappointingly chose to disregard the scientific community and force through a change in the timescales to 2050.

It could be the Conservatives were motivated by a wish to stay in line with their Party’s national position, or it could be that their inability to accept a Labour initiative was down to bloody mindedness. Either way it’s wrong-headed to put political considerations ahead of the existential threat mankind faces.

Having already instigated changes to the Business Plan we are pleased our action has resulted in a commitment to move to net zero emissions. However, we are deeply disappointed that Wyre won’t be playing a fuller role in tackling climate change.

It’s true the council is better positioned thanks to Labour action, but by delaying the zero-emission target date, Wyre is now out of step with many other councils. With the UN warning of catastrophic global consequences of exceeding a 1.5C rise in temperature, Wyre Labour implore the ruling group to urgently re-think its high-risk stance.

We need to act now; 2050 is too late.

Coun Rob Fail & Coun Lorraine Beavers

Leader and Deputy Leader of Wyre Group Of Labour Councillors


We need to change the law on abortion

I’m an ideological Libertarian. I believe abortion is murder. It violently ends life and thus breaks the non-aggression principle central to my ideology.

Change is urgently needed, because in the profound words of Ronald Reagan, “the unborn child has a higher right, and that is to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”.

Taking a life from another without their consent is evil. It’s in direct contradiction to God’s eternal law.

Name and address supplied


Disabled forgotten in welfare reform

Too often, people with learning disabilities like myself are left out of thinking in welfare reform. Applying for PIP left me frustrated and worried about money – I had to wait over a year to get the support I was entitled to and during that time, it was hard to make ends meet.

The current system is not fit for purpose and needs a complete reboot so that it can help the people it’s designed to support. The Disability Benefits Consortium report has to be listened to because we need change right now.

Mark Brookes

Campaign Advisor at