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Dame Helen Mirren is backing a bid to keep free TV licenses for people aged over 75.
Campaigners are set to deliver 36,000 letters to Conservative leadership candidates Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt to demand the party make good on its 2017 pledge to keep the concession for the length of this Parliament.
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Dame Helen, 73, threw her weight behind the campaign, saying it was 'absolutely heartbreaking' that older people would lose their free license when television was such a critical part of their lives, the Mirror reported.
She said: 'In many cases it acts as an important contact with the outside world.
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'I would urge all those involved including the Government to do the right thing and to carry on funding free licences for all over-75s – the cost of which is surely a small price to pay for keeping so many vulnerable older people connected.'
An analysis by the Labour Party revealed that 469,622 people aged 90 and older would lose their free licenses next year, and the party's deputy leader Tom Watson hit out and the scrapping, calling it a 'scandal', the Mirror reported.
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He said: 'When you turn 100 years old you get a letter of congratulations from the Queen, but from next year centenarians could also get letters demanding payment for a TV licence.'
Dame Helen was one of 20 celebrities to have written an open letter calling for the free licenses to be maintained, with other signatories including Sir Lenny Henry, Christopher Biggins, Amanda Redman,...
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