A SCHEME which allows elderly Prudhoe residents to claim back some of their TV licence costs has been scrapped.

The TV Licence Scheme, which was launched in 1980 by Prudhoe Town Council, currently allows Prudhoe residents who are in receipt of state retirement pension and pay for a TV licence to claim £30 in cash back from the council.

Karbon Homes customer services desk at the Spetchells Centre, where Prudhoe Town Council is also based, currently carries out eligibility checks for the grant, but is no longer able to support the council.

At the last meeting of Prudhoe Town Council’s planning, contract and works committee, councillors voted by a majority to cease the support from the end of the financial year.

They took into account that, in June 2020, the government would no longer fund free TV licences for over-75s. If the BBC did not offer to continue the support, it would increase the number of Prudhoe residents eligible for the grant.

The council heard that currently, not all those entitled to the £30 grant claimed it, and based on the last published census the cost would be £32,850 if they did, while only £12,000 was currently allocated in the budget to the scheme.

The refund will continue to be paid until March 31, 2019 to those who have not already claimed in the current financial year.