Ben Fogle, 46, has opened up about what motivated him to donate his salary for the latest series of BBC’s Animal Park to help the over 70s, who will now have to pay for a TV licence. The presenter’s charitable move comes after the BBC announced last year that only those on Pension Credit will be eligible for a free TV licence from June due to increasing costs.
They explained the licence will be means tested and around 1.5 million people who claim Pension Credit will be exempt from the charges.
In an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk, Ben insisted the government’s decision was “deeply unfair” and he felt compelled to make the donation without properly “thinking it through” due to his strong feelings about the situation.
The former Castaway star said: “I just did it as a knee jerk reaction, I’m really honest with my feelings and I felt it was deeply unfair.
“I didn’t really think it through, but I’m happy I did it and people responded really positively.”
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Ben Fogle on donating BBC salary to pensioners' TV licences (Image: GETTY•WENN)
Ben Fogle donated his Animal Park salary to pensioners (Image: WENN)
Speaking about the reaction from his colleagues and the public to his decision, he added: “I don’t think you can argue against it.
"I think most people agreed it was wrong to take that service away from people who really need it.”
Ben, who has been working with Age UK, argued that society is “not caring for the elderly as we should”.
He said: “I think society is