BBC Pay: Rows Brew as Chris Evans & Gary Linekar Top List

BBC Pay: Rows Brew as Chris Evans & Gary Linekar Top List
 BBC Pay: Rows Brew as Chris Evans & Gary Linekar Top List

The BBC has today revealed its £30million rich list of nearly 100 highest paid on-screen stars – but staff are livid after learning just how much less they earn than their rich colleagues.

Radio 2 host Chris Evans was the corporation’s top earner on up to £2.25million last year followed by Match of the Day’s Gary Lineker on £1.8million, who insisted it was his agent who was to blame for his giant pay packet.

Claudia Winkleman and Alex Jones are the only women in the top ten highest paid broadcasters – but the Strictly and One Show hosts took home up to £1.75million less a year than the highest paid male stars.

One in three of the 96 top earners are women and other high profile female broadcaster have expressed their disgust about the emerging gender pay gap with many using the hashtag #notonthelist in protest. 

The BBC also faces a backlash because Graham Norton – who is believed to earn £2.5million a year for his chat show – only had to declare £900,000 because most of his cash is paid to him via a production company.

Bake Off star Mary Berry, Question Time host David Dimbleby and Top Gear’s Matt LeBlanc are not on the list at all for similar reasons.  

The BBC’s annual report revealed today: 

  • There are 96 broadcasters in total earning more than £150,000-a-year, which is more than Prime Minister Theresa May 
  • The BBC makes almost £5billion from the licence fee and the sale of its shows overseas – but still made an overall loss of £129million last year; 
  • Seven of the top ten highest paid are men – the top woman is Claudia Winkleman but she earns £1.75m less than the top man Chris Evans;
  • Only one in three people on the BBC rich list is a woman – with senior female broadcasters using hashtags #notonthelist and #genderpaygap in protest; 
  • Graham Norton, David Dimbleby and Mary Berry are in a group whose true earnings are hidden because BBC cash goes to them via a production company; 
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The list is topped by Chris Evans (pictured today) who earned up to £2.25million last year followed by Gary Lineker on up to £1.8million

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Graham Norton earned up to £900,000 but the £2,5million he was paid for his chat show is not included – he is followed by Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine

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The BBC’s top paid woman is Claudia Winkleman who earns up to £499,000 for her TV and radio work – around £1.75million less than the top man Chris Evans – and the One Show’s Alex Jones earns £450,000 and is joint ninth

Director General Tony Hall has urged his staff not to make comparisons but the list of people earning more than £150,000 has revealed stark differences on many hit shows. 

The BBC’s top paid woman is Claudia Winkleman who earns up to £499,000 for her TV and radio work – around £1.75million less than the top man Chris Evans.

The BBC’s top earners finally revealed 

1. Chris Evans £2.2m – £2.25m

2. Gary Lineker £1.75m – £1.8m

3. Graham Norton £850,0000 – £899,999

4. Jeremy Vine £700,000 – £749,999

5. John Humphrys £600,000 – £649,999

6. Huw Edwards £550,000 – £599,999

7. Steve Wright £500,000 – £549,999

= 8. Claudia Winkleman £450,000 – £499,999

= 8. Matt Baker £450,000 – £499,999

= 9. Nicky Campbell £400,000 – £449,999

= 9. Andrew Marr £400,000 – £449,999

= 9. Stephen Nolan £400,000 – £449,999

= 9. Alan Shearer £400,000 – £449,999

=9. Alex Jones £400,000 – £449,000

10. Fiona Bruce £350,000 – £399,999

The One Show’s Alex Jones is joint ninth in the top ten – and is the only other woman in there. 

But a pay gap among Strictly has emerged with Craig Revel Horwood and Darcey Bussell earning up to £199,000 but Bruno Tonioli gets up to £249,000 along with Len Goodman.

In further contrast BBC Breakfast’s Dan Walker gets up to £250,000 a year but co-hosts Sally Nugent and Louise Minchin don’t even earn enough to break £150,000 threshold. 

Mr Walker said in a post on Twitter that he and Louise Minchin get ‘exactly the same’ pay for presenting the morning news show, but he earns more because of his additional work on Football Focus. 

And there could be embarrassment among the presenters of flagship Radio 4 programme, Today.

John Humphrys earns between £600,000 and £649,000, for the morning news programme and other work, including presenting Mastermind.

Nick Robinson is on £250,000 to £299,000, ahead of female presenter Mishal Husain (£200,000 to £249,000), who also presents TV news for the corporation, but their colleague Sarah Montague does not make the £150,000 pay bracket.

BBC bosses could be hauled before Parliament over the issue of disperate pay deals and women being paid less,

Damian Collins, chair of the Culture, Media and Sport Committee, said he will be raising the issue.

Speaking to Sky News he said: ‘This could be a really serious issue. If it becomes clear that people doing the same job with the same level of experience but being paid at very different levels, people will question why that can be the case.

‘There has been concern raised that we may see examples of this. This would certainly be a very serious matter.

‘This would certainly be something we would take up very strongly with the BBC when the director general and the chairman appear before the select committee in the autumn.’

But BBC insiders say that publishing the salary details is going to push up salaries or see talent leave for rivals.

Former BBC chairman Lord Grade told Today: ‘I can hear the phones ringing all over the UK today… Agents will be looking at the relative rates others are getting, clients are going be up in arms, the competition will be looking at it.

‘The net result of this is inflation. There’s only way this can go and that is that the talent salaries and wages will round upwards, they won’t go down. I guarantee you that.’  

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Broadcasters John Humphrys and Huw Edwards earn between £600,000 and £650,000 according to the male dominated list

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Radio 2 star Steve Wright earns £550,000 while the One Show’s Matt Baker earns £550,000

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Alan Shearer and Nicky Campbell also make the male-dominated top ten 

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Gary Lineker has said he has his ‘tin hat on’ as he and the BBC’s other millionaire stars will have their pay deals published

Director General Lord Hall said of the variation in salaries paid to the Today programme team: ‘I don’t want to talk about individuals when it comes to the Today programme, but let me just say you would be wrong to say that the lowest paid member of the presenting team is a woman.

The highest paid stars by job

Newsreaders

George Alagiah: Up to £299,000

Fiona Bruce: up to £399,000

TV presenters

Dan Walker: Up to £249,000

Gary Lineker: Up to £1.8million

Craig Revel Horwood: Up to £199,000

Darcey Bussell: Up to £199,000

Bruno Tonioli: Up to £249,000

Len Goodman: Up to £249,000

Radio hosts 

Chris Evans: Up to £2.25million

Eddie Mair: Up to £349,000

Nick Robinson: Up to £299,000

Moira Stuart: Up to £199,000

Vanessa Feltz: Up to £399,000

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John McEnroe: Up to £199,000

Stephen Nolan: Up to £449,000

Actors

Casualty actor Derek Thompson: £400,000

Amanda Mealing: £250k-£299k

Adam Woodyatt & Danny Dyer: £200k-£249k

Lacey Turner (and others) £150k-£199k

‘Leave it at that.’

Talking during a briefing on the annual report, Lord Hall defended Evans’s pay, saying: ‘Chris Evans is presenting the most popular show on the most popular radio network in Europe.

‘It might not be commercial radio, but we do know that for a number of presenters they have been made offers by commercial radio.

‘We also know we’ve lost people, not Chris, but to Amazon and to other big players … Also the choice for some of our talent is to go and do something completely different because they’re entertainers … that is the market we’re dealing with. Them saying ‘we’re going to do something completely different’ or … ‘it’s a market that is not just the UK but global’.’

Director of BBC Radio James Purnell told Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine – who is included in the list – the BBC is ‘not the civil service’.

‘People aren’t in very strict pay bands. People bring different things to the BBC. We have a process which we go through rigorously every time. We take into account the job, but also what people bring to the BBC, their history, what they could get elsewhere.

‘You would go mad if you start treating the BBC like the civil service, and if you do that it won’t be the BBC anymore.’

Earlier Gary  Lineker said has his ‘tin hat on’ today as the BBC’s millionaire stars faced having their pay deals published in detail for the first time.

The Match of the Day star, 56, is among 96 presenters and journalists paid more than the Prime Minister by the corporation and wished Twitter followers a ‘happy BBC salary day’.

Mr Lineker said: ‘I blame my agent and the other TV channels that pay more. Now where did I put my tin helmet?’.  

Gary Lineker also retweeted a message from Apprentice star Lord Sugar who praised the former footballer’s ‘loyalty’ to the BBC and suggested he was getting below the market rate when compared to stars at ITV and Channel 4 

Lord Hall told Radio 4’s Today programme that the BBC had reduced its spending on top talent by 25% in the past four years and 10% since last year, when 109 people took home a total of £31 million.

‘I completely understand that to lots and lots of people these are very large sums, but we are a global broadcaster in a very competitive market and we have to be competitive – but not foolishly.

‘No-one would want us to be paying sums where it’s not at a discount on the market. People expect us to have great broadcasters, great presenters, great stars, but pay them less than they would get on the market. Getting that discount right is very important.’

Lord Hall described the publication of top salaries, which was opposed by the BBC, as a ‘bad idea’ because it could tempt other broadcasters with deep pockets to poach stars creating an inflationary effect on pay.

The list reveals that newsreader and Antiques Roadshow presenter Fiona Bruce earns between £350,000 and £399,000 but fellow news host Huw Edwards is on £550,000 to £599,999.

The BBC’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg is on £200,000 to £249,000, below news presenter George Alagiah (£250,000-£299,000) and Radio 4’s PM host Eddie Mair (£300,000 – £349,000).

News host Sophie Raworth is on £150,000 to £199,000.

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Top Gear’s Matt LeBlanc are also kept secret because they are paid by the corporation foreign TV arm BBC Worldwide. Mary Berry is not listed either because she is paid via a private company

BBC Breakfast presenter Naga Munchetty is in the £150,000 to £199,999 bracket, and her colleague on the show Dan Walker, who also works on Football Focus and fronted slots from the Rio Olympics, took home between £200,000 and £249,000.

Marr’s BBC pay deal cut by £140,000 – but he says he could get more elsewhere

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Andrew Marr had his pay cut by a quarter

BBC presenter Andrew Marr has defended his £400,000-a-year salary, claiming he has turned down higher offers from the broadcaster’s rivals.

The former political editor was included on a list of the BBC’s highest paid on-screen talent published for the first time on Wednesday.

He revealed his salary had been steadily decreasing and had dropped £139,000 in the past two years.

In a statement, Marr said: ‘In the past I have been offered deals by the BBC’s commercial rivals at a higher rate than the corporation would pay.’

He added: ‘Following the publication of the BBC’s annual report, I can confirm that I’m paid £400,475 a year.

‘It covers the weekly Sunday morning show, my radio work, documentary commissions, television obituaries, and work on big news events such as elections and both the Scottish and UK referenda coverage.

‘It’s less, of course, than the £600,000 I was widely reported to be earning a couple of years ago; or indeed the £3 million a year Daily Telegraph claimed I was paid.

‘As the BBC moves to deal with highly paid employees, my salary has been coming down. I now earn £139,000 a year less than I did two years ago.’

Andrew Neil also addressed his inclusion on the list during Wednesday morning’s Daily Politics.

Sitting alongside co-presenter Jo Coburn, who was not included on the list, he said: ‘The BBC has published details of on-screen talent, which you may be surprised to know includes me – as on-screen talent.’

Discussing a sports segment on the programme, Neil joked: ‘Is Gary Lineker coming on to do this bit? That means the budget will be gone for the year.’

Neil was included in the £200,000-£249,999 bracket, while Match Of The Day presenter Lineker’s salary is more than £1.75 million.

Their fellow BBC Breakfast presenters Louise Minchin and Charlie Stayt do not make the £150,000 bracket.

In sport, Match Of The Day host Gary Lineker is paid in the £1,750,000 to £1,799,999 bracket. He had earlier revealed that he had turned down higher pay offers from commercial broadcasters.

Writing on Twitter, the former England striker said he had stuck with the Beeb ‘Because I love and value my job and BBC sport.’

But Wimbledon’s Sue Barker earns between £300,000 and £349,999, behind Alan Shearer (£400,000 and £449,999).

Clare Balding is paid between £150,000 to £199,999, putting her in the same list as Jonathan Agnew, Jonathan Davies and John McEnroe.

Presenters John Inverdale and Gabby Logan are on between £200,000 and £249,000.

Radio 2 Breakfast DJ and former Top Gear host Evans earns between £2.2 million and £2,249,999.

Graham Norton is listed as between £850,000 and £899,999 – but as the list only includes cash from licence fee payers, that does not include his chat show, for which the BBC pays an independent production company, which in turn pays his salary.

Strictly Come Dancing host and Radio 2 DJ Claudia Winkleman earns between £450,000 and £499,000.

Strictly judge Darcey Bussell earns between £150,000 and £199,999, putting her in the same band as Craig Revel Horwood.

But Bruno Toniolo, who also worked on Eurovision: You Decide, and former head judge Len Goodman earn more at £200,000 to £249,999.

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Stars of Casualty and EastEnders dominate the highest earning list of actors.

Long-running Casualty star Derek Thompson, who plays Charlie Fairhead in the popular medical drama, earns between £350,000 and £399,000.

His co-star Amanda Mealing, who plays Connie Beauchamp in Casualty and Holby City, is on £250,000 to £299,999.

Adam Woodyatt, Albert Square’s Ian Beale, is one of the top paying EastEnders actors at £200,000 to £249,000, along with newer recruit Danny Dyer (Mick Carter).

June Brown – EastEnders’ Dot Cotton – is not on the list.

Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi was paid between £200,000 to £249,0000.

Top Gear’s Matt LeBlanc is not on the list but it has not been disclosed whether he is paid £150,000 or more but from BBC Worldwide.

Names like Mary Berry are not on the list because she would have been paid by an independent production company, which the BBC paid.

The figures are for the money stars received from the licence fee from the financial year April 2016 to April 2017.

The stars have been warned to expect public anger over the huge sums. There will also be allegations of sexism – only a third of the high earners are women – and a backlash from staff on lower salaries.

In a bid to limit the damage, BBC boss Lord Hall has sent a video message to all staff reminding them that their salaries are large sums to most licence fee payers. 

‘We are dealing with the public’s money,’ he said. ‘This is not something we can take lightly.’

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In a bid to limit the damage, BBC boss Lord Hall has sent a video message to all staff reminding them that their salaries are large sums to most licence fee payers

The BBC fought tooth and nail against a government order to publish the figures. It then tried to delay their release.

In a sign of further panic, stars have been told they can defend their pay on social media – breaking with normal BBC protocol. Bosses have warned every staffer on £150,000 or more that their details will be published and in some against the public reaction.   

However, it will argue that the bill for top talent – those on £150,000 or more – has fallen by a tenth in a year, and a quarter over the five years

Lord Hall cautioned staff against making comparisons: ‘A word of warning; comparing people’s pay is not straightforward. Very few do precisely the same thing – people working at the same show may have other – or different – commitments.’

However, he apologised to staff for the startling difference in pay for men and women: ‘Of the talent earning over £150,000 – two thirds are men and one third are women. Is that where we want to be? No. Are we pushing further and faster than any other major broadcaster? Most certainly.’

The difference in pay for men and women presenting programmes together is likely to cause the greatest uproar.

A very senior source said: ‘One of the issues here is the massive gender gap.’

Another added: ‘It is pretty uncomfortable if two people are sat at the same desk or on the same sofa, and the man is paid more than the woman for what is ostensibly the same job.’ 

It also fought to delay publication to buy time to even up the gender pay gap and move staff off its books.

It has to publish salary details for stars it employs directly, including news presenters, the vast majority of radio hosts and other key television stars.

However, some major names such as Graham Norton and Mary Berry will escape the list because presenters employed via a third-party production company will not have their pay disclosed.

The BBC will be able to keep the pay of dozens of its top TV stars a secret in future years because it has spun off its production arm, BBC Studios, as a commercial company subject to the same loophole.

This will be of limited help to the BBC this year when most of its on-screen talent will face the full glare of public scrutiny.

One ministerial source told the Mail: ‘They have resisted this all the way. They have fought against it tooth and nail.’

Lord Tony Hall told staff yesterday: ‘In all the negotiations with the Government about our Royal Charter, we said it would be wrong to put the names of our talent against what they’re paid. We do believe in transparency. In fact, we, uniquely in the media, have published what we’ve been paying to talent in bands for the last seven years – but without naming them.

Is that Strictly fair? BBC’s flagship show’s Craig Revel Horwood and Darcey Bussell earn £50,000 less than Bruno Tonioli on up to £250,000 

Craig Revel Horwood and Darcey Bussell earn less than fellow Strictly Come Dancing judges Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli, it has emerged.

The pay gap was revealed today in figures released by the BBC for the first time.

They show head judge Goodman, who has since bid farewell to the UK version of the series, is paid up to £249,000. 

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Craig Revel Horwood and Darcey Bussell earn less than Strictly judges Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli

Tonioli is in the same pay bracket of between £200,000 and £249,000 but fellow Strictly judges Revel Horwood and Bussell earn less.

They are both in the pay bracket of between £150,000 and £199,000, it was revealed today.

For the first time, the BBC have had to say which of its household names are on more than £150,000 a year.

The corporation fought tooth and nail against a government order to publish the figures. It then tried to delay their release.

In a sign of further panic, stars were told they could defend their pay on social media – breaking with normal BBC protocol. 

Bosses have warned every staffer on £150,000 or more that their details will be published and in some against the public reaction.  

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Tonioli is in the same pay bracket but fellow Strictly Come Dancing judges Revel Horwood and Bussell earn less

‘Charlie from Casualty’ actor Derek Thompson is BBC’s highest-paid soap star on £400,000 as the rest of the show’s cast are named Auntie’s highest earning actors 

Perhaps one of the most surprising revelations to come out of the BBC pay dossier is that stars on Casualty are the corporation’s highest paid actors.

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Figures released today revealed that Derek Thompson, who plays veteran nurse Charlie Fairhead on the medical drama, is the BBC’s highest paid actor at £400,000-a-year

Figures released today revealed that Derek Thompson, who plays veteran nurse Charlie Fairhead on the medical drama, is the BBC’s highest paid actor tipping the scales at between £350,000 and £399,000 a year.  

Co-star Amanda Mealing, who plays doctor Connie Beauchamp, is paid between £250,000 and £299,000.

Adam Woodyatt, Albert Square’s Ian Beale, is one of the top paid EastEnders actors at £200,000 to £249,000, along with newer recruit Danny Dyer, who plays Mick Carter.

The BBC was today forced to admit that nearly 100 of its stars are paid more than the Prime Minister. For the first time, the corporation has revealed which of its household names are on more than £150,000 a year.

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Mr Thompson is the show’s longest-serving actor, having played the role of Charlie for more than 30 years. He is the only remaining original character to have appeared continuously since the first episode on 6 September 1986.

In 2004 Thompson left the show for five months, but returned the following year to reprise the role. Later in 2005 he took another four months off before returning for that year’s Christmas special, and for the past 12 years he has taken a two-month break every year. 

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Thompson, pictured during the first series, is followed by Amanda Mealing (right), who plays doctor Connie Beauchamp, who is paid between £250,000 and £299,000

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 Ms Mealing is in the same pay bracket as Eastenders star Danny Dyer and Adam Woodyatt

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Casualty is the longest-running emergency medical drama television series in the world. It was first broadcast on BBC One on September 6 1986

Casualty is the longest-running emergency medical drama television series in the world. It was first broadcast on BBC One on September 6 1986.

The character of Charlie is described by the BBC as ‘the lynchpin of Holby’s emergency department – an indispensable, trustworthy and a diplomatic member of the team.’

Series producer Oliver Kent described Charlie as ‘by far our most important character’ and ‘absolutely core to the show’s success’. 

Many of the Beeb’s biggest stars have been warned to expect public anger over the huge sums. There will also be allegations of sexism – only a third of the high earners are women – and a backlash from staff on lower salaries. 

BBC boss Lord Hall today apologised to staff for the startling difference in pay for men and women: ‘Of the talent earning over £150,000 – two thirds are men and one third are women. Is that where we want to be? No. Are we pushing further and faster than any other major broadcaster? Most certainly.’

It is understood that today’s figures show that the BBC’s overall bill for on screen and on air talent – not just those earning more than £150,000 – was £194million last year. 

The top earner you may never have heard of: BBC Radio 5 Live’s ‘shock jock’ and Radio Ulster presenter Stephen Nolan earns £450,000 

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BBC Radio 5 Live presenter Stephen Nolan earns more than three of the four Today programme hosts, it was revealed today

BBC Radio 5 Live presenter Stephen Nolan earns more than three of the four Today programme hosts, it was revealed today.

The broadcaster, who joined BBC Radio Ulster in 2003, is paid up to £450,000 a year.

In comparison, Mishal Husain earns up to £250,000, Nick Robinson £300,000 and Justin Webb up to £200,000.

Fellow Today programme presenter John Humphrys is paid up to £650,000.   

Nolan has won 12 Sony Radio Academy Awards, including seven Gold, giving him the record for the most Golds in the history of radio’s equivalent to the Oscars.

He presents five days a week on BBC Ulster and also appears on BBC 5 Live and does some TV work. In 2005 and 2006 Nolan was named the Royal Television Society’s Presenter of the Year.

Other radio hosts Simon Mayo, Nick Grimshaw and Vanessa Feltz earn up to £400,000 it was also revealed today.

For the first time today, the BBC had to say which of its household names are on more than £150,000 a year.

The corporation fought tooth and nail against a government order to publish the figures. It then tried to delay their release.

In a sign of further panic, stars were told they could defend their pay on social media – breaking with normal BBC protocol. Bosses have warned every staffer on £150,000 or more that their details will be published and in some against the public reaction.

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The broadcaster, who joined BBC Radio Ulster in 2003, is paid up to £450,000 a year

Bosses let top stars go on social media to defend giant salaries

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Gary Lineker has 5million Twitter followers and a reputation for inflammatory remarks

The BBC will make a dramatic break with protocol today by allowing its top-earning stars to defend their pay on social media.

Presenters such as Match of the Day host Gary Lineker and News at Ten anchor Huw Edwards are already well known for their Twitter rants.

However, the BBC will let them take on their critics directly today when it publishes the list of top earning employees.

Mr Lineker – thought to be one of its highest paid stars – has 5million Twitter followers and a reputation for inflammatory remarks. 

Last year, he called those who questioned the age of refugees coming from Calais ‘hideously racist’.

And Mr Edwards found himself in hot water in 2015 when he used Facebook to mock the viewing figures of ITV’s News at Ten. 

The BBC has not laid out specific guidance for how stars should behave online, and is leaving them to decide how much they want to discuss publicly when their salaries are revealed.

Meanwhile, bosses are dealing with complaints inside the Corporation from stars who feel that they are underpaid compared with their peers. 

Dozens have demanded meetings ahead of today’s disclosure after learning their colleagues are on the list but they are not.

Many female presenters are allegedly furious to learn they do not earn as much as their male counterparts, even though they do more or less the same job.

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Presenters including News at Ten anchor Huw Edwards are well known for their Twitter rants

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Lord Tony Hall, director general, warned staff against making comparisons

Others are incredulous that some little-known names who rarely bring in big stories earn more than some of the BBC’s best journalists who risk their lives in warzones. 

The BBC faces the threat of walkouts and defections to rival broadcasters eager to poach them. 

The corporation will for the first time reveal the names and pay details of presenters earning £150,000 or more, in £50,000 salary bands. Insiders said the pay discrepancies are already proving ‘toxic’ and the ill-feeling is set to get worse when more details are published this morning.

Bosses have been meeting individually with the 96 staff who are on the list and warning them about the likely backlash from the public. In some cases, it has offered them protection in case criticism turns to threats or violence.

Lord Tony Hall, director general, yesterday warned staff against making comparisons. 

A senior insider said some pay gaps appear worse than they really are because the BBC has refused to publish precise figures. Staff who earn similar figures but whose pay falls either side of a salary band could believe the discrepancy was actually up to £100,000.

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