AROUND 40 people in Winchester were caught watching TV without a licence in the first six months of 2012, according to the latest figures.

Across Hampshire, the total was more than 3,700 people, including 1,100 in Southampton, 480 in Portsmouth, 100 in Fareham and 70 in Eastleigh.

Nationally 204,000 people were caught, meaning the national rate of evasion remains at five per cent – with 19 out of 20 households correctly licensed.

A spokesman from the TV Licensing Agency said: “These figures paint a very positive picture as the vast majority of people in the UK continue to pay their licence fee. Unfortunately a minority of people do not pay for their licence, which is unfair to the law-abiding majority who do pay.”

Anyone who is caught watching TV without a licence faces a fine of up to £1,000.