1. ITV Report

Claudia Winkleman, Vanessa Feltz and Zoe Ball among first women on BBC top 10 earners list

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Martha Fairlie

Claudia Winkleman, Vanessa Feltz and Zoe Ball have featured in the BBC’s list of top 10 earning talent, the corporation has reported.

This is the first time since presenter salaries were disclosed in 2017 that women have made the top 10.

Sports presenter Gary Lineker is still the corporation’s top talent earner overall for the second year in a row, according to the BBC.

His salary is between £1,175,000 and £1,754,999 and is more than the combined salaries of the three women on the list.

Gary Lineker is the corporation's biggest earner. Credit: PA

The corporation has announced the full list of correspondents and presenters earning more than £150,000, as part of its annual report, covering the period from April 2018 to March 2019.

Former Radio 2 breakfast show host Chris Evans, who left the BBC in December, is still featured among the highest earners and is second on the list, but he will not feature next year.

Ball took over hosting the breakfast show from Evans and her figure reflects what she earned for hosting the show in the first three months of the year, as well as her earnings for the Saturday show she hosted before that - the figure will rise next year.

The corporation's director-general Tony Hall said it had "turned a corner on gender pay".

BBC director-general Tony Hall said the corporation had 'turned a corner on gender pay.' Credit: PA

Lord Hall added: "When we published the figures for top talent, there was a 75:25 split between men and women.

"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 gender pay gap is down from 7.6 percent in 2018 to 6.7 percent in 2019, and there has been a reduction of men earning more than £500,000.

The men among the top 10 highest-paid BBC stars in 2018/19. Credit: PA

Top 10 highest-paid BBC stars

  1. Gary Lineker: £1,750,000 - £1,754,999
  2. Chris Evans: £1,250,000 - £1,254,999
  3. Graham Norton: £610,000 - £614,999
  4. Huw Edwards: £490,000 - £494,999
  5. Steve Wright: £465,000 - £469,999
  6. Alan Shearer: £440,000 - £444,999
  7. Andrew Marr: £390,000 - £394,999
  8. Zoe Ball: £370,000 - £374,999
  9. Claudia Winkleman: £370,000 - £374,999
  10. Vanessa Feltz: £355,000 - £359,999
  11. Jason Mohammad: £355,000 - £359,999

Another feature of the BBC report was the recent decision to scrap free TV licences for over 75s unless they receive pension credit, which BBC chairman Sir David Clementi described as a fair decision.

Sir David said: "Of course, the biggest issue the board has had to consider over the past year was on the future of free TV licences for the over-75s.

"I truly believe the decision we have made to fund free licences for the over-75s in receipt of Pension Credit is the fairest one possible, fairest to the poorest pensioners and fairest to all licence fee payers."

The corporation has faced widespread criticism over its decision.

Lord Hall said: "The decision to continue funding free TV licences for over-75s on Pension Credit makes it all the more important that the BBC does everything possible to help itself financially - that's why the record levels of efficiency and higher commercial returns are so important in ensuring we have a strong BBC for the future."