February 8, 2016 10.34 am This story is over 93 months old

‘It’s for my parrot’: Lincoln TV licence excuses revealed

“My hamster ate my payment card”: TV Licensing has revealed the top excuses given by people for not paying their licenses.

Some of the excuses people in Lincoln gave for not paying for a TV licence were as ludicrous as they come, and licensing officers have uncovered a host of pitiful reasons given by viewers across the region.

“Yes, the TV is on but I don’t watch it. It’s only on for my parrot, Captain Jack Sparrow, who is learning the theme tune to Bargain Hunt”, said one imaginative Lincoln resident when she was challenged for not paying her license.

Microwave ovens and the King of Scotland also feature in the list of implausible excuses for not having a TV Licence given over the last year.

One exasperated viewer informed TV Licensing that she couldn’t pay for her TV licence as her payment card had been eaten by her hamster and she was waiting for it to “come out the other end”.

Another viewer told a TV Licensing enquiry officer: “I didn’t think I needed a licence because I’m not from around here – I’m from somewhere else.”

Top excuses in the midlands and East Anglia

Top excuses in the midlands and East Anglia

Many from the list have been turned into animations by five of the UK’s leading animation universities in a bid to win a national competition.

The winner of the People’s Choice film will be based on the highest number of ‘likes’ received on the TV Licensing YouTube channel, with all films published on February 8. Viewers will have until 5pm on March 4 to vote for their favourites.

Mark Whitehouse, TV Licensing spokesperson for the Midlands and East Anglia, said: “The students’ animations are highly imaginative but we’re not so impressed with the creative approach to excuses, as watching or recording live TV without a licence is against the law.

“Even though we’re effective at catching evaders, we’d always prefer people pay than risk a maximum £1,000 fine.

“For those who may find it difficult to pay in one go, we offer a range of payment options to spread the cost, sign up online.”
More than 40 excuses films have been submitted from students across the UK. View and vote for your favourite animation here.