BBC presenters' 6-figure salaries exposed, revealing massive gender pay gap

'You are paid TOO MUCH!' Jeremy Vine comes under attack after BBC salaries published

Highest paid stars would be limited at earning 20 times the amount of the lowest paid staff. It is widely acknowledged that on the whole the BBC pays less than its competitors while delivering high-quality and award-winning content.

Presenter and talk show host Piers Morgan disagrees.

Clare Balding is also one of the top earners, with a salary of £150,000 - £199,999. In the United Kingdom, there is a $190 annual fee exacted on every television-owning household, as well as those who watch BBC programs online.

The former footballer was just one of 96 BBC stars earning £150,000 or more a year funded by the licence fee to be revealed.

The salaries were published in bands, rather than as exact figures.

Radio 2 host Chris Evans topped the table, in a salary bracket of £2,200,000 - £2,249,999. Former England worldwide Gary Lineker, now the host of the football show, Match of the Day, is the next highest paid on £1.8 million.

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The list reveals a major gender imbalance among the BBC's top earners.

Hall said, "Of the 43,000 talent contracts with the BBC previous year, less than a quarter of one per cent were paid more than £150,000".

By contrast, Andrew Marr, Stephen Nolan from BBC Northern Ireland, Huw Edwards, John Humphrys, Nicky Campbell, Steve Wright, and Jeremy Vine are all paid considerably more.

Green Party co-leader Caroline Lucas also responded to the report, calling the wage disparity "eye-watering" and "utterly infuriating".

Anticipating the onslaught of criticism, BBC Director Tony Hall said the organisation is committed to closing the gender-pay gap. The BBC does not exist in a market on its own where it can set the market rates.

Most of the salaries are not particularly high by worldwide - and especially US - TV standards.

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Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer both feature among the BBC's highest-earners.

The corporation, which employs just over 21,000 people, said the number of on-air employees paid over 150,000 pounds a year had decreased from 109 a year ago.

'But of course we all appreciate that we are dealing with the public's money.

But Tom Watson, deputy head of the Labour Party, defended the high price tags of some of the BBC's biggest talents. That may explain the absence of big-name stars including nature presenter David Attenborough and Top Gear host Matt LeBlanc.

When asked if it was right he was paid more than the Prime Minister Evans laughed and said: "I am paid more than the Prime Minister aren't I, is it fair?"

Many commentators believe the list could have a detrimental effect to the BBC, lead to a rise in inflation, and therefore a knock on effect on the other broadcasters in the United Kingdom when they are trying to attract talent.

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Steven Barnett, professor of communications at the University of Westminster, argued that the disclosure drive had "nothing to do with transparency". I think they all do a brilliant job.

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