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Lyons reluctant to reveal stars' pay

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Lyons reluctant to reveal stars' pay

Chris Moyles (WENN)

Sir Michael Lyons, chairman of the BBC Trust, has agreed to consider whether the corporation should release more information on what it pays to star talent.

Members of the Commons media select committee put pressure on Sir Michael and director general Mark Thompson to publish presenters' contract details in a questions session yesterday.

One MP, Nigel Evans, suggested talent could be listed by band so that "we would start to know how many people are receiving huge chunks of money".

Sir Michael said releasing stars' pay details would "almost certainly lead to less value" for the BBC when it is agreeing future deals. However, he conceded: "I will take that away to consider as a proposition, but without agreeing to the suggestion that it would be in the licence fee payer's interest for us to move in that direction."

Thompson told the committee: "When we contract someone to present a programme, our belief, common in our industry, is that the interests of confidentiality apply."

An investigation by the Trust, launched amid concerns about large sums going to stars such as Jonathan Ross and Chris Moyles, concluded that the BBC is not paying above market rates.

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