Senior Tories have called threats to end the TV licence for a subscription service “cultural vandalism”.
They are urging a halt to the “vendetta” against the BBC after Number 10 said it may face a “massive pruning”.
BBC radio stations, except for Radio 4 and 5, TV channels and the website are at risk along with the corporation’s stars earning money from second jobs.
A source said Prime Minister Boris Johnson was “really strident” on the need for serious reform.
But ex-Deputy Prime Minister Damian Green, right, warned the Government faces a backlash.
He said: “Destroying the BBC wasn’t in our manifesto and would be cultural vandalism. ‘Vote Tory and close Radio 2’. Really?”
Tory MP Huw Merriman said: “I’m not sure this vendetta against the BBC is going to end well. No mention of it in our manifesto. I won’t be supporting it.”
The Government is already consulting on plans to decriminalise non-payment of the licence fee and abolishing it when the BBC’s charter is up for renewal in 2027.
Shadow Culture Secretary Tracy Brabin said the consultation is a “pre-judged ruse” to go through the whole of the BBC, which is loved by 80% of the public.
Yesterday Transport Secretary Grant Shapps sought to downplay concerns, saying: “It is simply not the case that there is some preordained decision about the future funding of the BBC out there.”
Tory Damian Collins, a former chairman of the Culture Select Committee said: “No surprise that no one has put their name to this destructive idea.”
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