BBC annual report shows decline in pay bill for top earners

BBC culls news board (PA Wire)
5:35am, Tue 06 Jul 2021
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The BBC’s annual report will show a 10% decrease in its pay bill for top talent, a source has said.

The reduction will be revealed as part of the broadcaster’s report published on Tuesday, the PA news agency understands.

It will also show the BBC has “made a difference to the public during this challenging period”.

Gary Lineker (PA Wire)

Since 2017, the BBC has been made to publish the names of those earning more than £150,000 each year, a move instigated by the Government.

But pay packets made through BBC Studios, the broadcaster’s commercial arm, are not revealed.

Last year it was announced that Match Of The Day host Gary Lineker had taken a pay cut, making Zoe Ball the BBC’s highest-paid earner.

Lineker also signed a new five-year contract with the broadcaster, with a 23% pay cut from £1.75 million to around £1.35 million.

He still topped the list of star earners in the 2019/20 figures published last year, but his new deal meant Ball would earn more if her salary was unchanged.

A BBC source said: “Everyone knows that the last year in lockdown has been a challenge for everyone.

Zoe Ball (PA Archive)

“The BBC will be releasing a report that shows we have made a difference to the public during this challenging period.

“While doing that, the BBC has also been reforming at pace.

“The report will feature a range of measures that show real and tangible progress.

“For example, our pay bill for top talent is down by 10%. This is not an isolated figure, but one of a range of other stats that demonstrate we are on the right path.

“None of this means the BBC is complacent. We have to continue to work hard to deliver for the public. That is where we are investing all our efforts”.

Ball recently announced she is stepping down as presenter of Strictly Come Dancing spin-off It Takes Two, with professional dancer Janette Manrara taking over her duties alongside Rylan Clark-Neal.

Ball, 50, took over from Chris Evans as the host of the Radio 2 Breakfast Show in January 2019 but shed a million listeners in her first year.

The BBC recently faced scrutiny following the publication of a report by Lord Dyson into the circumstances surrounding Martin Bashir’s Panorama interview with Diana, Princess of Wales.

It said the journalist used “deceitful conduct” to obtain the 1995 bombshell interview, which was then covered up by a “woefully ineffective” internal investigation, in which the BBC failed to uphold “governance, accountability and scrutiny”.

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