THE BBC will apologise to the mum of missing university cook Claudia Lawrence after letters about licence fee payments were sent to her daughter's property.
The university chef vanished in York back in 2009 but demands still arrive at her cottage.
Devastated mum Joan Lawrence keeps finding the pushy letters on visits to Claudia’s terraced cottage.
Distraught Joan, 79, said: “One threatened court action and a £1,000 fine. It’s unbelievable and needs to stop.”
And the broadcaster now plans to apologise directly to Joan Lawrence after saying they were "very sorry" for the distress caused.
A BBC spokesman said: "We're very sorry for the distress caused to Mrs Lawrence and we will be apologising to her directly.
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"We have taken steps to ensure no further letters are sent to the address."
Claudia was 35 when she vanished on her way to work at York University. Claudia is presumed dead.
Joan has preserved the home on her own since ex-husband Peter died aged 74 in 2021.
After a January letter threatened Claudia with court action and a £1,000 fine, Joan contacted the TV Licensing Authority, run by the BBC to enforce the fee.
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But her pleas were ignored and another letter followed.
Joan exclusively told The Sun: “There was a letter recently, threatening a £1,000 fine if the licence wasn’t paid. It’s unbelievable.
“I’ve written to them to tell them what’s happened, and the police are supposed to be sorting it out, but the letters still come.
“Receiving these letters causes me untold heartache.”
Incredibly Claudia’s disappearance, and an appeal from Joan, has even featured on Crimewatch — the BBC’s own show.
Joan added: “You’d think they’d know by now, after all the publicity, wouldn’t you?
“They must have sent two or three letters a year in all the time this has been happening.
“One was nasty and horrible. It threatened that not paying could affect her credit score.
“I’m not someone who has ever had any debts, I pay for things straight away, so it was an awful thing to read. It really must stop.”
Joan’s shameful treatment heaps more pressure on the BBC, whose reputation has been tarnished by the row over Match of the Day host Gary Lineker’s migrant tweet.
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Last night critics slammed the demands sent to Joan, and renewed calls for the BBC to review how it targets non-payers. More than 52,000 people were fined following TV licence prosecutions in the latest figures from 2020.
And 76 per cent of them are estimated to be women. Campaigners argue women are overwhelmingly prosecuted as they are usually at home when enforcers call.
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