BBC pay: 10 female presenters 'set to sue public broadcaster over gender pay gap'

Household names from television and radio come together in revolt over list of corporation's highest earners 

Lucy Pasha-Robinson
Friday 21 July 2017 10:08 BST
The BBC's biggest salaries revealed

At least 10 female presenters are reportedly preparing to sue the BBC after a seismic gender pay gap at the public broadcaster was revealed.

Radio 4 Woman's Hour presenter Jane Garvey, who is leading the group, said a legal claim was "certainly a possibility" after the corporation was forced to publish a list of people earning more than £150,000.

The group, which is expected to grow, consists of household names from both television and radio who came together after the top-paid talent list was published on Wednesday.

Controversy followed the report's release when it emerged the stars earning over half a million pounds were all men.

Many female presenters are reportedly furious that their male counterparts are significantly better paid, despite doing the same job.

Ms Garvey told The Telegraph: "This is the sisterhood in full flow", and claimed "not a single male broadcaster" had been in touch to offer their support.

The identity of the group members remains unknown but Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis was said to be furious to not be included on the list, despite her fellow Newsnight presenter Evan Davis earning up to £299,000 a year.

Her agent Alex Armitage said it was "beyond madness" that she did not earn £150,000 and was "being dealt with".

Ms Maitlis, who has worked for the BBC since 2001, told a TechUK event after the publication: "You're an industry doing so well, soon you'll be able to afford a BBC man."

The highest paid female presenter is Claudia Winkleman, who earns between £450,00 and £499,000. But the highest paid male is Chris Evans on between £2.2m and £2.25m.

The BBC’s director general Lord Hall pledged to close the gender pay gap by 2020 and promised to improve diversity after it emerged only 10 of the 96 listed stars were non-white.

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