BBC pay row: Tory MP Andrew Bridgen demands licence fee be scrapped

'BBC transparency will prompt it to address issues quickly', says Andrew Bridgen MP

A total of 96 top stars' salaries were revealed in a report on Wednesday

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Tory MP and long-time BBC critic Andrew Bridgen has demanded an end to the BBC licence fee after yesterday's pay revelations.

Bridgen raised an urgent question in Parliament in response to yesterday's salary disclosure, which has led to a huge debate about whether the Corporation represents value for money.

The MP for North West Leicestershire has previously demanded that non-payment of the licence be decriminalised, and he echoed this demand on Paul Ross's show this morning.

Bridgen said the TV licence is a "regressive tax" as everyone, rich and poor, is forced to pay the same, and it's an "anachronism".

He added that the BBC licence fee should be replaced by a "subscription model" along the lines of Netflix or Amaxon, where users pay a monthly fee to access films and TV series.

Yesterday's salary dump also reveals a vast discrepancy between the earnings of the BBC's top stars. Chris Evans, the highest-paid male presenter, was found to earn around four times as much as his female counterpart Claudia Winkleman.

Bridgen backed calls for greater scrutiny on this issue, telling Paul: "I'm in favour of everybody getting the right pay for the job they do, whether they're working for the BBC or anyone else.

"The BBC are very big on these PC issues, such as the gender pay gap, and now it transpires they may been perpetrating it."

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