By Revealing Salaries, The BBC Is Holding Itself Accountable In Battling The Gender Pay Gap

Will things be "equally divided between men and women" by 2020?

With an act of transparency thanks to an order from the government, the BBC has unveiled how much its top talent — those who earn more than £150,000 — ais paid. The reveal has stirred up some controversy for the network as it showed there is a huge gender wage gap.


Former Top Gear host Chris Evans — no, not Captain America — topped the list of 96 individuals with a salary of £2.2 million to £2.25 million. Men were abound in the top few positions, with the highest-paid woman being Strictly Come Dancing host Claudia Winkleman with a salary of £450,000-£500,000. This means the highest-paid man makes between four and five times more than the top-earning woman.

Photo Credit: Top Gear BBC America / Facebook |

Here's a look at the BBC stars who, per the data, make the most money. The top 10 positions are comprised of 14 individuals — 12 men and three women — who all happen to be White. In case you're not familiar with these U.K. personalities, we've bolded the ladies for you:

1. Chris Evans (£2.2m - £2.25m)
2. Gary Lineker (£1.75m - £1.8m)
3. Graham Norton (£850K - £900K)
4. Jeremy Vine (£700K - £750K)
5. John Humphrys (£600K - £650K)
6. Huw Edwards (£550K - £600K)
7. Steve Wright (£500K - £550K)
8. Matt Baker and Claudia Winkleman (£450K - £500K)
9. Nicky Campbell, Alex Jones, Andrew Marr, Stephen Nolan, Alan Shearer (£400K - £450K)
10. Fiona Bruce (£350K - £400K)

Needless to say, people had some feelings about the discrepancy between what men and women are being paid over at the BBC — with some also arguing that everyone on the list is grossly overpaid in relation to the average Brit, but that's a whole other story.

Of the 96 people, a breakdown from the BBC itself shows that it breaks down to 62 men versus 34 women who made the list. Part of the problem here, as the Mirror points out, is that co-stars are earning different amounts than each other. Sure, sometimes that can be blamed for seniority or people having multiple jobs at the organization, but sometimes it's unexplainable.

The BBC's director general, Tony Hall, was quick to point out the network's progress in terms of gender and diversity with on-air talent. He notes that it is more diverse than the broadcasting industry and the civil service but that there's still room for improvement.

"At the moment, of the talent earning over £150,000, two-thirds are men and one-third are women," Hall acknowledged, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "We've set a clear target for 2020: we want all our lead and presenting roles to be equally divided between men and women. And it's already having an impact. If you look at those on the list who we have hired or promoted in the last three years, 60 percent are women and nearly a fifth come from a [minority] background. Meeting our goal on this is going to have a profound impact not just on the BBC, but the whole media industry. It's going to change the market for talent in this country."

It remains to be seen that just having a 50-50 split between men and women also means there will be strides made to ensure that people are paid equally regardless of their gender. The one silver lining here, though, is that the BBC seems to be striving toward equal representation and have at least put this data out there for all to see.

(H/T: Deadline)

Cover image via Top Gear BBC America / Facebook |


Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest news and exclusive updates.