Boris Johnson tells BBC licence fee will be axed

Boris Johnson tells BBC licence fee will be axed, by Tim Shipman.

Downing Street has turned on the BBC — vowing to scrap the television licence fee and make viewers pay a subscription. The national broadcaster could also be compelled to downsize and sell off most of its radio stations.

In a plan that would change the face of British broadcasting, senior aides to Prime Minister Boris Johnson insisted on Sunday AEDT that they were “not bluffing” about changing the BBC’s funding model and “pruning” its reach into people’s homes.

The blueprint being drawn up in government will scrap the ­licence fee and replace it with a subscription model; force the BBC to sell off the vast majority of its 61 radio stations but safeguard Radio 3 and Radio 4; reduce the number of the corporation’s national television channels from 10; scale back the BBC website; invest more in the World Service and ban BBC stars from cashing in with lucrative second jobs.

Set at £154.50 a year, the licence fee generated £3.69bn for the BBC last year. …

A No 10 source rejected [a] claim a subscription model would cost the BBC money: “The BBC is making a wonderful case for the importance of the BBC; if the people of this country agree, they’ll subscribe.”

Take note, those on the Australian right. In Australia, the ABC is even more dominant than the BBC in the UK, and ensures a leftward tilt to Australian politics.

hat-tip Stephen Neil