Chris Evans to host Top Gear: Presenter set to become among BBC's highest paid hosts

Evans confirmed that he take over from Jeremy Clarkson

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The Independent Online

Chris Evans is expected to become one of the BBC’s highest earners after securing Jeremy Clarkson’s old job presenting Top Gear.

Evans, 49, has signed a three-year contract, valued as highly as £1m annually, to lead the show with two new presenters.

It is believed Evans will also executive produce the show, having negotiated a “hefty production fee,” according to the Guardian. It is thought that the majority of his salary will come not from the £3.7bn licence fee but instead from the corporation’s commercial arm BBC WorldWide.

Earlier this year a BBC Trust report, seen by the Daily Mail, indicated that 14 of the corporation’s top presenters took home a reported £12m between them. Among the names included were Graham Norton, Gary Lineker and Susanna Reid.

Evans was reportedly already on this list, but his place among the BBC’s top earners looks to be cemented by the latest move.

Worldwide chief executive Tim Davie, reportedly a huge Evans fan, took the lead in persuading the radio presenter to take the job.

The BBC Radio 2 and The One Show presenter had categorically denied all claims he was being lined-up to replace Clarkson, who left following a “fracas” with a producer.

Clarkson’s former colleagues, James May and Richard Hammond, are not thought to be part of the new line-up and speculation is already mounting over the identity of the new co-hosts.

Evans is expected to stop presenting the Friday edition of BBC1’s The One Show but will reportedly continue work on a Radio 2 breakfast show.

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