BOTH the Government and the BBC are being urged to think again over the decision to stop providing free TV licences to all over 75s.

Members of Cheshire East Council supported a motion from Cllr Andrew Gregory, Conservative member for Sutton, calling for the rethink at Thursday’s full council meeting.

But councillors disagreed over who was to blame, with the Conservatives hitting out at the BBC for the move, while Labour councillors highlighted the Government’s decision to cut funding for the free licences.

In his original motion, Cllr Gregory claimed many older people are unable to access the internet – meaning TV and radio are crucial for providing their news and entertainment.

It said: “The BBC – who are responsible for the decision to withdraw funding for this service – should think again and change this decision given the impact this will have on many of the most poor and vulnerable people in the borough, who rely on terrestrial television as their main means of being kept informed and entertained.

“With the D Day Landing celebrations only a few weeks behind us, it is unfortunate that the generation which gave so much to give us the freedoms we enjoy, could be penalised by such a short-sighted measure.”

BBC bosses have faced criticism after announcing last month that only over 75s who receive pension credit will receive a free TV licence from next June.

The move will see many older residents now have to stump up £154.50 a year for a colour TV licence.

Cllr Rachel Bailey, Conservative member for Audlem, suggested the move was letting down Britain’s Second World War veterans – including one from her own ward.

“I cannot begin to tell you the hurt and upset that he felt in being notified that he would no longer receive a TV licence,” she said.

“He isn’t able to travel in the manner that he used to, but he does enjoy watching the cricket, the tennis and indeed the football.

“To have this burden put on him, he felt, didn’t give the recognition to him and his fellow war heroes.”

The move follows a renegotiated charter between the BBC and Government in 2015, which stopped the Government providing the cash to fund blanket free TV licences for over 75s.

And Cllr Mike Hunter, Labour member for Middlewich, insisted the council should ‘get the facts right’.

“It is right that these people receive this benefit,” he said.

“The little perks that pensioners get go to make their life easier – and their lives should be easier. They should not be penalised by people who can well afford to pay for these things.

“It is what separates us from the savages. We look after those who can’t look after themselves.”

But Cllr George Hayes, Conservative, hit out at the recent high salaries published by the BBC and insisted the corporation ‘needs to make better choices’.

After Labour’s amendment to the motion recognising the Government’s role in cutting the licence was approved, Cllr Gregory’s motion was unanimously passed.