Dame Glynis Breakwell says Vice-Chancellor role could be done for '£150,000 a year'

  • Video report by ITV News Wales & West of England Correspondent Rupert Evelyn

Bath University Vice-Chancellor Dame Glynis Breakwell has said someone could do her job for a lot less than her current £468,000 salary.

Dame Breakwell told ITV News it would be possible for someone to do the role for £150,000 but questioned whether they would do a "really good job".

Asked whether someone on £300,000 a year less could do the job as well as she has, she said: "I think that that's possible. Whether they would do a really good job if they were paid less is a different issue."

Dame Breakwell said there was still a great deal of confidence in her leadership and her salary was simply a reflection of her experience and the results she was delivering.

She claimed that she announced her leaving date in order to give the university time to find the right successor.

"I will step down as Vice-Chancellor on 31 August 2018. Until then I am still in post.

"By then I will have been Vice-Chancellor for 17 years, that is one third of the entire life of this university.

"So it's a very long time to have been Vice-Chancellor and I think it's appropriate now that I signal to the university that I will be standing down then so that the university can have an orderly transition to the next Vice-Chancellor."

She said: "I think it's really important to recognise that the senate vote was actually, at the end of the day, in favour of me staying.

"If it had been the other way round, it wouldn't have been a narrow defeat. That wasn't a defeat."

Dame Breakwell is the highest paid Vice-Chancellor in the UK and she had been seen to have bowed to mounting pressure over her pay and perks package by announcing her leaving date.

She denied ever determining her own salary or influencing the remuneration committee's decision and said she was paid the going rate.

"The only way you can exert influence on such a committee is by performing exceptionally well, by delivering year after year to the targets that they establish for you. That's how you influence them.

"And if there is a reason to say that I've influenced the remuneration committee will be because of the performance that I have delivered."

Dame Breakwell said universities now operated within a competitive international arena and her salary was a reflection of the marketplace.

She said: "I don't think that it's unreasonable for people with an enormous amount of experience and a proven track record to be rewarded in the way they are because that is what happens in the international context."