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BBC reveals salaries of top high earners including Chris Evans, Graham Norton and Fiona Bruce

PUBLISHED: 11:14 19 July 2017 | UPDATED: 19:02 19 July 2017

Chris Evans has been announced as the BBC's top earner. Picture: PA

Chris Evans has been announced as the BBC's top earner. Picture: PA

PA/Press Association Images

The corporation has revealed for the first time its talent list of 96 of the biggest high-earners and two thirds are men.

Graham Norton has been revealed as one of the BBC's top earners. Picture: Christopher BainesGraham Norton has been revealed as one of the BBC's top earners. Picture: Christopher Baines

The BBC has revealed the big names earning over £150,000 as BBC chief Tony Hall admits “the need to go further and faster on issues of gender and diversity”.

Radio 2 presenter and former Top Gear host Chris Evans topped the list with earnings of more than £2m.

Match of the Day host Gary Lineker comes in a close second with a salary of £1.75m - £1.8m.

Graham Norton is listed as earning £850,000 - £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.

Only one third of the list of talent earning over £150,000 are women and Strictly Come Dancing host Claudia Winkleman was the only female in the top ten at number eight with a £450,000 - £499,999 pay packet.

The next highest paid female is the One Show’s Alex Jones at £400,000 - £449,000, closely followed by Antiques Roadshow presenter Fiona Bruce at £350,000 - £399,999.

The highest payed soapstar is Casualty actor Derek Thompson, who pays Charlie Fairhead in the popular medical drama, and earns £350,000.

There could be embarrassment for the presenters of flagship Radio 4 programme, Today.

John Humphrys earns £600,000 to £649,999, 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- £249,000), who also presents TV news for the corporation, but their colleague Sarah Montague does not make the £150,000 pay bracket.

Director-general Lord Hall said that the corporation is “pushing faster than any other major broadcaster” for equality and has warned that comparing pay “is not straightforward”.

He has also defended the licence fee-funded pay packets, saying: “we need to employ the very best - stars, great presenters, writers, actors correspondents.

“We’re in a market that is now even more competitive than ever. A decade ago it might have been just ITV or Sky or commercial radio. But now it’s Netflix, Amazon or Apple.”

The BBC receives £3.7 billion every year from the TV licence fee.

Are the BBC paying its TV talent too much? Vote in our poll.

TOP TEN BBC SALARIES

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

What do the people of Norwich think of the BBC salaries? Harry Douglas-Gratton took to the city streets to find out.

Burt Landman, 59, from Baltimore, Maryland, United States said: “I just think it’s grossly unfair… it’s like in the US. These celebrities earn gross amounts of money compared to us. It’s not like working, people don’t work as hard.”

68-year-old Michael Culwick from Thorpe St Andrew, commented: “It all depends on what they deliver, how much air time. Is he [Chris Evans] getting more air time than Claudia Winkleman?

“Anyway, 2.2 million is too much for anybody… It’s not good value for money.”

Louis Kernahan, an 18-year-old, student who lives in Norwich, thought it would depend on how much screen time each celebrity has. He said: “From the stats, you could suggest that the men are getting more screen time which could be seen as sexist. However, if they’re being paid differently for the same screen time then it’s also unfair.”

And finally, 24-year-old Sophie Rose from Norwich added: “[About the wage gap between the highest paid male and highest paid female] That is quite a big gap. It’s shocking, but you have to look at how much work each one is doing.”

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