Are residents being billed twice due to village name mix-up?

Dirne Spearing with her TV licence confusion. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER
Dirne Spearing with her TV licence confusion. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

People in a Harborough district village have been warned to check their bills - after one woman got two requests for her TV licence payment.

Dirne Spearing, who lives in Kibworth Beauchamp, says the double-billing problem seems to relate to the village’s recent name change.

For years the postal address of her home was Hillcrest Avenue, Kibworth.

Then villagers voted to go back to the village’s full historic name - Kibworth Beauchamp - on their postal addresses.

The full name was officially restored two months ago.

Now Dirne has got two TV licence bills - one for Hillcrest Avenue, Kibworth, which she’s paid, and one for Hillcrest Avenue, Kibworth Beauchamp - the same address of course - which the licensing authority insists is still outstanding.

Dirne, a civil servant, said: “I’ve tried to change my details online , but it won’t register.

“Meanwhile, the TV licensing authority has sent us a notice threatening to take action against us for non-payment.

“People like us who are switched-on can cotton on to what’s happened here.

“But if other people in Kibworth Beachamp are getting their TV licence requests twice they could be worried - or even end up paying twice.

“And then you wonder if any other bills will be affected. The same problem could turn up on all sorts of computer systems. I just thought local people should be warned.”

Kibworth Beauchamp parish council chairman Chris Wood said he was not aware of a rash of double-billing in the village.

“Yes there was an official change two months ago” he confirmed.

“I’ve not heard of any other problems, but we’ll certainly be vigilant.”

Local county councillor Dr Kevin Feltham added: “It shouldn’t be a problem - the postcode hasn’t changed.

“It looks like the Royal Mail change has not got through to a computer database somewhere. A case of ‘computer says no’.”