WATCH: News Letter reporter finds new use for paper TV licence

TV Licensing is urging customers across Northern Ireland to join the 7.6 million people who currently receive their licence online.

The SwitchNI Campaign, which was launched this week, encourages customers to go paperless and sign-up for an e-licence.

News Letter reporter Graeme Cousins attempts to turn a TV licence into a swan

News Letter reporter Graeme Cousins attempts to turn a TV licence into a swan

Customers who pay their licence by Direct Debit or the full amount annually, can now choose to receive TV Licensing information by email, check their details at any time online, and remain fully covered without the need for a paper licence.

With the paper licence no longer necessary for customers who make the switch, TV Licensing has suggested turning the licences into origami swans – a suggestion which proved hard to resist for News Letter reporter Graeme Cousins.

Figures reveal that almost 150,000 licence holders across Northern Ireland have already joined the paperless revolution – an increase of more than 22,000 in the past year.

Belfast currently leads the way with e-licences, but the increasing trend is also visible in the Bangor area where more than 7,000 people currently receive their licence by email. Other strong e-licence areas include Lisburn, Newry and Antrim.

To continue reducing the number of paper licences issued, TV Licensing is hoping more customers will sign-up to keep their information safe and secure online.

Karen Grimason, spokesperson for TV Licence said: “Getting your licence online instead of the traditional paper copy means we use less paper and have more money for programmes.

“Thousands of people across Northern Ireland have already made the switch and we would urge other customers who pay by direct debit or counterfoil to take that step towards an e-licence. Making the switch is easy and can be done quickly and safely online.

“Just visit and select ‘Update your licence’.”

If you watch or record live TV, either through your TV or live online through a website, then you need to be covered by a TV Licence. You also need a licence to watch BBC programmes on iPlayer, on any device.