Saunders: BBC blooms 'wasting cash'
Jennifer Saunders has accused the BBC of wasting money on flowers and meals out for performers.
The actress and comedian, who has starred in some of the corporation's biggest shows including Absolutely Fabulous and French and Saunders, said it was an " executive-run place for idiots".
She told the Daily Mail: " The basic remit of the BBC is that it should make a good variety of television programmes that entertain and inform. In the old days, you could speak to someone in charge over a sandwich at Television Centre.
"Now, it has to be over an expensive lunch at The Ivy. Would I like a car to pick me up? No thanks, I'll get myself there.
" It drives me mad. And you don't have to keep sending me flowers. It's such a waste of money. All of this involves a whole band of people who simply wouldn't be necessary if the so-called talent were left alone to get on with their job."
Her comments come after a BBC producer said the corporation's central booking system for taxis "cost twice as much" as they should.
Writing in the BBC's staff magazine Ariel, Marc Settle said he was quoted a price of £87 for a taxi from Tonbridge to Gatwick on the internal system even though he could have booked a cab from a local firm for £45.
A statement from BBC Procurement said central booking charges " may appear to be higher than booking locally and directly" but the BBC had to use firms that are " both legally compliant and vetted" and offered "a 24/7 service".