Jeremy Clarkson slams plans to make BBC reveal stars' pay
Jeremy Clarkson has criticised government plans to make the BBC reveal its stars pay packets.
The former Top Gear presented expressed his disgust at the plans, which involves stars annually earning more than £150,000, saying that the BBC's management should be trusted to pay enough to retain its staff.
The Royal Charter-imposed threshold was originally due to be set at £450,000, but after taking over as culture secretary this summer, Karen Bradley announced that the figure should be lower.
In an interview with the Radio Times, Clarkson lambasted those "obsessed with money" when asked about his earnings from the Grand Tour.
"Take the business of BBC talent," he added. "What country are we living in when we want to know how much people are paid? It's disgusting."
He continued: "It's Tony Hall's job, as the director general [of the BBC], to say, 'We're going to pay that person that much,' and if we trust Tony Hall, and we must, because he's the director general, then you trust him to be doing a good job.
You can't be saying to him, 'Why are you paying him that?' Because if you don't, he'll go to ITV. It's absolutely ludicrous." When he was under the BBC's employment, Clarkson was one of their highest paid stars, taking home an estimated £1m a year.
He also raked in millions in dividends from Bedder 6, the company he formed with long-time production partner Andy Wilman.
When the pair sold their stakes to shareholder BBC Worldwide in 2014, Clarkson's yearly earnings were said to have shot to more than £14m.