The top paid journalists and news presenters at the BBC

Household names Graham Norton and Fiona Bruce

Chris Evans has topped the list with a salary between £2.2m and £2.25m, and Claudia Winkleman is the highest paid women, earning £400,000.

Lineker, in fact, is likely to earn more from the BBC than his personal salary as his production company Goalhanger Films also makes documentaries for the corporation, including the recent film about boxer Anthony Joshua, and co-produces The Premier League Show.

This is the first time the pay of its high-paying stars has been revealed.

Unsurprisingly, the pay gap in the vast majority of industries is skewed towards men, however, there are numerous areas in which female workers earn more than male workers.

Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer both feature among the BBC's highest-earners.

Meanwhile, Labour MP Jess Phillips made people LOL when she responded to Fiona Bruce being paid less than Huw Edwards.

However, stars paid by BBC contractors would not be hit by the pay ratio, the spokesperson said, but would still face higher rates of tax.

Amanda Mealing is the top earning female drama actor, being paid £250,000-£299,999.

John Humphrys, who presents Today and Mastermind, collected up to £649,999, and Dan Walker, who presented Breakfast, Football Focus and Olympic coverage in 2016, was paid £200,000 to £249,999.

Interestingly, the report also lifts the lid on what the BBC's in-house lawyers earn.

The BBC's director-general, Lord Hall, had said he intends to close the gender pay gap by 2020.

However, he acknowledged that there is "more to do".

"We have set the most stretching targets in the industry for on-air diversity and we've made progress, but we recognize that there is more to do and we are pushing further and faster than any other broadcaster", he said. "We are a shining example of equality - the women dominate on ITV!". "This is already having an impact-of the top talent we have hired or promoted in the last three years, more than 60 per cent are women". "It's going to change the market for talent in this country".

Claudia Winkleman is the highest paid woman on BBC earning at most £499,000 whilst Tess Daly earns at most £399,999. "If it becomes clear that people are doing the same job with the same level of experience but are being paid at very different levels, people will question why that can be the case", he said. While this is an absolutely incredibly important discussion to have, I think that when it comes to closing the wage gap, men and women of color certainly should be involved in the debate, too.

The salaries were published in bands, rather than as exact figures.

He added: "It was about expecting the BBC to be able to make the argument as to why they felt that certain individuals were worth that".

Lord Hall described the publication of top salaries, which was opposed by the BBC, as a "bad idea" because it could tempt other broadcasters with deep pockets to poach stars creating an inflationary effect on pay.

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