Bourne man’s anger after TV Licensing demands repayment of six pence debt

Paul Mason, of Church View, Bourne, with his 6p bill from TV Licensing EMN-160211-173508009
Paul Mason, of Church View, Bourne, with his 6p bill from TV Licensing EMN-160211-173508009

A Bourne resident said he has been left “flabbergasted” after receiving a letter warning his TV Licence could be cancelled – over a debt of 6p.

Paul Mason, 43, who lives in Church View, received the letter from TV Licensing on Wednesday.

After checking three year’s worth of receipts and statements, Paul was adamant he had not underpaid and phoned up to query the letter.

He said: “I was flabbergasted and stunned when I opened the letter.

“I pay for my TV licence monthly, by taking a payment card into my local convenience store and handing over £12.12 in cash.

“Fortunately I have a full set of receipts and statements and could see I had always paid the full amount.

“But when I queried it on the phone, they claimed I had underpaid in May.

“I was gobsmacked. I can’t believe I’m wasting time and money arguing over six pence.

“It must have cost them at least a pound to print and send me the letter – and that’s without considering the staff time involved. It’s ludicrous.”

Paul used to run a pub in Brighton but moved to Bourne three years ago to be near to his mother Celia Pearson, who lives in the town.

He is currently unable to work due to ill health and says he is angry about wasting mobile phone credit ringing TV Licensing to argue his case.

The TV Licensing letter sent to Paul states: “Please pay £0.06 by Wednesday 9 November.

“If you miss payments, we could cancel your payment plan and your licence.”

TV Licensing told the Mercury Paul should have made one payment of £12.18 and 11 payments of £12.12. However, they say he actually paid 12 monthly payments of £12.12, totalling £145.44, meaning he has 6p outstanding.

A spokesman said: “Mr Mason did not pay the full sum of £145.50 required for his licence but as the unpaid amount is nominal, we will inform him he doesn’t need to pay the sum requested in the letter, which was automatically computer-generated.”