I am disappointed but not surprised that the Tory Government has broken promise by refusing to fund the extension of free TV licences for over-75s, with the scheme due to end in August.

For many of the four million over-75s affected, including thousands in St Helens borough, the television isn’t simply the ‘box in the corner’, it is central to their lives, as both a constant companion and a window to the world. This has been made clearer than ever by lockdown and shielding.

After years of cuts, it’s disingenuous of the Conservatives to blame the BBC. This will no doubt affect many older people’s well-being and household finances. Instead of passing the buck, we must see a better solution.

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