Belfast Telegraph

BBC boss told me to rely on my boyfriend when I asked for a pay rise, says Bruce

Speaking out: Fiona Bruce
Speaking out: Fiona Bruce

By Lucy Mapstone

Fiona Bruce has said a BBC boss once suggested she did not need a pay rise because she could rely on her boyfriend.

The new Question Time host, who has been at the BBC for 30 years, also said the broadcaster was previously "not a nice place to be".

Bruce told the May edition of British Vogue magazine that she asked for a "desultory" pay rise during her early years at the corporation.

She said: "My boss said, 'Do you really need it? What does your boyfriend do? You live with him, don't you? Doesn't he pay for most things?'"

Bruce recalled that she had replied: "Well, I do the supermarket shopping, so I need to pay for that."

She added: "How ludicrous is that?"

She did not reveal when the pay rise discussion took place, or who it was with.

Bruce joined the broadcaster in 1989 as a researcher on Panorama and over the next 14 years rose to become the first female newsreader on the BBC's flagship News At Ten.

She has also presented some of the BBC's best-loved light entertainment programmes, such as Antiques Roadshow and Fake Or Fortune, and has become one of the corporation's best-paid stars, earning more than £350,000 a year.

In December it was revealed she was taking over from David Dimbleby as the host of BBC One current affairs panel show Question Time, and her first episode aired in January.

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