BBC will keep red button after plans to axe text services slammed for cutting off disabled and elderly

THE BBC has ditched plans to axe its red button text services after being accused of cutting off the disabled and the elderly.

It is scaling back the service but will keep the most-used parts going.

Lottery results and local sports pages will be removed and there will be fewer updates.

It means local, national and international news, sports stories, fixtures and results, as well as weather forecasts, will still be available.

Dan Taylor-Watt, director of product, said the changes had followed “extensive dialogue with a wide range of groups”.

But he added: “To enable the continuation of the most valued text and data elements of the service, we are having to find ways to reduce cost and complexity elsewhere.”

Beeb bosses announced last year the text and data parts were being axed.

But the cost-cutting move prompted protests from groups representing the elderly, disabled and vulnerable.

They say it was a lifeline to those who did not have or want an internet connection.

The partially-sighted said its type was easier to read than those used online or in print.

Red button video streams were never under threat and will continue as normal.

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