Chris Evans’s BBC pay packet dwarfs top-earning female Claudia Winkleman’s
Only one third of the list of talent earning over £150,000 are women.
The BBC has revealed its top talent pay – with DJ Chris Evans topping the list with more than £2 million and dwarfing the pay packet of the corporation’s top-earning woman Claudia Winkleman.
Only one third of the list of talent earning over £150,000 are women, with the top names being men. Details of stars’ pay were revealed in £50,000 bands.
The top 10 includes just two women, Strictly Come Dancing and Radio 2 host Winkleman (£450,000-£499,999) and The One Show presenter Alex Jones (£400,000-£449,999).
Radio 2 Breakfast DJ and former Top Gear host Evans took home between £2.2 million and £2,249,999 in the 12 months to April 2017.
A year ago, the star admitted that he was overpaid, saying: “It’s not exactly breaking news that people who do what I do for a living … get paid too much money …
“We’ve got a job that people would kill for … most of us work part time. Just pay us less, that’s what I would do, it’s not rocket science.”
Speaking at a press conference to launch the annual report, BBC Director-General Lord Hall defended the former Top Gear host’s pay.
“Chris Evans is presenting the most popular show on the most popular radio network in Europe,” Lord Hall said.
“We do know that, for a number of presenters, they have been made offers by commercial radio.
“We’ve lost people…. to Amazon and to other big players … Also, the choice for some of our talent is to go and do something completely different because they’re entertainers … that is the market we’re dealing with.”
There could be embarrassment for the presenters of flagship Radio 4 programme Today.
John Humphrys earns between £600,000 and £649,000 for the morning news programme and other work, including Mastermind.
Nick Robinson is on £250,000 to £299,000, ahead of female presenter Mishal Husain (£200,000 to £249,000), who also presents TV news for the corporation, but their colleague Sarah Montague does not make the £150,000 pay bracket.
Lord Hall suggested that other programmes worked on by some Today presenters had skewed the figures, saying that the lowest paid Today host was not a woman.
“I don’t want to talk about individuals when it comes to the Today programme but let me just say you would be wrong to say that the lowest paid member of the presenting team is a woman. Leave it at that,” he said.
Asked whether the publication could lead to lawsuits from female presenters, Lord Hall said: “We will be working carefully and managing our relationships with the talent on which we depend … I’m not going to re-run the arguments that we had with the Government on the charter.
“We lost those arguments. Let’s move on. I want to get the very best talent working for the BBC and the very best relationships with them.”
Match Of The Day host Gary Lineker is the second highest earner and is placed in the £1,750,000 to £1,799,999 bracket. He earlier revealed that he had turned down higher pay offers from commercial broadcasters.
Writing on Twitter, the former England striker said he had stuck with the Beeb “Because I love and value my job and BBC sport.”
Graham Norton is listed as between £850,000 and £899,999 – but as the list only includes cash from licence fee payers, that does not include his chat show, for which the BBC pays an independent production company, which in turn pays his salary.
Winkleman is eighth in the list of highest earners, after Jeremy Vine, Humphrys, news reader Huw Edwards, broadcaster Steve Wright and presenter Matt Baker.
The BBC has been forced to make the disclosures as part of negotiations with the Government for its new royal charter.
The list reveals that newsreader and Antiques Roadshow presenter Fiona Bruce earns between £350,000 and £399,000 but fellow news host Edwards is on £550,000 to £599,999.
The BBC’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg is on £200,000 to £249,000, below news presenter George Alagiah (£250,000-£299,000) and Radio 4’s PM host Eddie Mair (£300,000-£349,000).
News host Sophie Raworth is on £150,000 to £199,000.
BBC Breakfast presenter Naga Munchetty is in the £150,000 to £199,999 bracket, and her colleague on the show Dan Walker, who also works on Football Focus and fronted slots from the Rio Olympics, took home between £200,000 and £249,000.
Their fellow BBC Breakfast presenters Louise Minchin and Charlie Stayt do not make the £150,000 bracket.
Wimbledon’s Sue Barker earns between £300,000 and £349,999, behind Alan Shearer (£400,000 and £449,999).
Clare Balding is paid between £150,000 to £199,999, putting her in the same list as Jonathan Agnew, Jonathan Davies and John McEnroe.
Presenters John Inverdale and Gabby Logan are on between £200,000 and £249,000.
Strictly judge Darcey Bussell earns between £150,000 and £199,999, putting her in the same band as Craig Revel Horwood.
But Bruno Tonioli, who also worked on Eurovision: You Decide, and former head judge Len Goodman earn more at £200,000 to £249,999.
Stars of Casualty and EastEnders dominate the highest earning list of actors.
Long-running Casualty star Derek Thompson, who plays Charlie Fairhead in the popular medical drama, earns between £350,000 and £399,000.
His co-star Amanda Mealing, who plays Connie Beauchamp in Casualty and Holby City, is on £250,000 to £299,999.
Adam Woodyatt, Albert Square’s Ian Beale, is one of the top paying EastEnders actors at £200,000 to £249,000, along with newer recruit Danny Dyer (Mick Carter).
June Brown – EastEnders’ Dot Cotton – is not on the list.
Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi was paid between £200,000 to £249,000.
Top Gear’s Matt LeBlanc is not on the list but it has not been disclosed whether he is paid £150,000 or more but from BBC Worldwide.
BBC presenter Andrew Marr defended his £400,000-a-year salary, claiming he has turned down higher offers from the broadcaster’s rivals.
And Lord Hall admitted that the “disclosures highlight … the need to go further and faster on issues of gender and diversity” but said that the corporation was “pushing … faster than any other major broadcaster”.