Television licence fee climbs to £147 in first rise since 2010

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The annual television licence fee will increase to £147 from £145.50 on April 1 this year, the Government has said.

The fee will increase for the first time since 2010.

It was announced by the Government last year the licence fee would rise in line with inflation for five years from April 1 2017.

The announcement comes as the broadcaster's director general said TV licence collectors had "fallen short", following reports they were deliberately targeting vulnerable people who have not paid.

Enforcement officers at Capita are ordered to catch 28 evaders every week and promised incentive bonuses of up to £15,000 a year, according to a Daily Mail investigation.

The company is reportedly paid £58 million a year to collect licence fees for the broadcaster, and its staff were said to have targeted vulnerable people, including a war veteran with dementia and a young mother in a women's refuge.

In a letter to Capita's chief executive Andy Parker, the BBC's Tony Hall expressed his "serious concern" about the reports and called for "urgent clarification and reassurance" that vulnerable people were not being "targeted".