District amongst best at paying licence fee

THE people of Banbridge are amongst the best in Northern Ireland when it comes to paying their TV Licence.

But there was a warning for those currently without one from the licencing authority.

More than 70 people were caught watching TV without a licence in Banbridge alone during the first six months of 2011, in comparison to 500 in Craigavon, 500 in Newry and 240 in Ballymena.

They are among almost 197,000 people caught across the UK during the first half of this year. The average evasion rate remains at a low of just over five per cent, meaning that almost 95 per cent of properties are correctly licensed.

Deborah King, TV Licensing spokesperson, said, “While the vast majority of people in the UK pay their licence fee, to be fair to those who pay, we have to be firm with those who try to get away without paying. We take TV Licence evasion very seriously and we will not hesitate to prosecute if people continue to break the law.

A colour TV Licence currently costs £145.50 and is required by anyone watching or recording TV programmes as they are shown on TV, whether they are using a TV set, computer, or any other equipment. Anyone watching TV illegally risks prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000.

Further information on how and where to pay the licence fee can be found on the TV Licensing website.