BBC salaries: Highest earners’ pay revealed, with Gary Lineker heading all-male top seven

Zoe Ball is BBC’s highest-earning woman

Maya Oppenheim
Women’s Correspondent
Tuesday 02 July 2019 11:05
Gary Lineker tops the list again of BBC's best paid stars

Gary Lineker is the BBC’s highest-earning talent for the second year in a row, the corporation reported, as it revealed that its seven best-paid stars are all men.

The Match Of The Day presenter took home £1.75m last year.

Former Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans is still on the list – with around £1.25m – because he only quit his breakfast show in December.

Graham Norton is in third place, pocketing between £610,000 and £614,999 for payments for his Radio 2 presenting job and “a range of programmes and series” which do not include his chat show.

The figures, contained in the corporation’s annual report, reveal there are three women in the top 10.

Zoe Ball, Evans’s breakfast show replacement, is the BBC’s highest-earning woman. She came in at eighth place – taking home £370,000 in the 12 months to April.

Although her earnings are expected to rise, she will nonetheless earn less than her male predecessor.

Claudia Winkleman came in at ninth place and Vanessa Feltz was the 10th highest-earning star. ​Winkleman earns between £370,000 and £374,999, while Feltz earns between £355,000 and £359,999.


Fourth on the list was TV newsreader Huw Edwards who has taken a pay cut of around £30,000 and is now on around £490,000.

DJ Steve Wright has seen his salary slashed by a whopping £85,000 to around £465,000, which puts him in fifth place.

Alan Shearer, the Match Of The Day pundit who came in sixth place, has seen his salary go up and now earns between £440,000 and £444,999 per annum.

Broadcaster Jason Mohammad (£355,000) has also seen his salary go up from between £260,000 and £269,999 in the last published list. He is now on a par with Feltz.

Andrew Marr was the seventh highest earner, taking home between £390,000 and £394,999.

Some presenters and actors who work for the corporation’s commercial arm, BBC Studios, are not included, meaning the stars of some of its biggest programmes like Doctor Who are not on the list.

The figures showed the BBC’s gender pay gap has fallen from 9.3 per cent when it was first published in 2017 to 6.7 per cent in 2019. The national median is 17.9 per cent.

The corporation’s director-general Tony Hall said it had “turned a corner on gender pay”.

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“When we first published the figures for top talent, there was a 75:25 split between men and women,” he said. “The projection for 2019-20 is now 55:45. This is significant change. The task is not complete, we are not complacent, but we are well on our way.”

The figures will face heightened scrutiny after the BBC announced it would be scrapping the universal free TV licence for over-75s – arguing it needed the money to protect its investment in programming.

The revelation of star’s salaries came after the BBC’s director-general said the public backs the broadcaster giving high salaries to “big stars” because they are “talented and entertaining”.

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