Vanessa Feltz's BBC salary raises eyebrows

LEEDS, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 19:  Vanessa Feltz attends the Audio & Radio Industry Awards at First Direct Arena Leeds on October 19, 2017 in Leeds, England.  (Photo by Andrew Benge/Redferns)
LEEDS, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 19: Vanessa Feltz attends the Audio & Radio Industry Awards at First Direct Arena Leeds on October 19, 2017 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Andrew Benge/Redferns)

Vanessa Feltz was today revealed as one of only three women on the BBC’s top 10 highest earners list.

The 57-year-old presenter boasts a paycheque in the range of £355,000 – £359,999, having received a pay rise from last year’s annual salary of £330,000 – £339,999.

Feltz hosts an early morning show on BBC Radio 2 from 5am to 6.30am as well as a the 7am breakfast show on BBC Radio London.

The news was met with some consternation online, with people questioning Feltz’ bumper wages.

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Official figures show BBC Radio 2 is the UK’s most listened-to station, and 2017 saw Feltz pull in record figures for her BBC Radio London breakfast show.

Read more: BBC top 10 highest paid stars revealed

But in the last two years the listening figures for her London breakfast show have been on a downward spiral. Last year she haemorrhaged listeners, dropping from 307,000 to 188,000. And in the first quarter of this year her audience fell by another 23.4 per cent.

Undated composite file photos of (left to right) Zoe Ball, Claudia Winkleman and Vanessa Feltz, who are among the top 10 highest-paid BBC stars in 2018/19, according to the corporation's latest annual report.
Zoe Ball, Claudia Winkleman and Vanessa Feltz, who are among the top 10 highest-paid BBC stars in 2018/19, according to the corporation's latest annual report (Credit: PA)

Feltz was born in London and educated at the prestigious Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls and Trinity College, Cambridge.

After becoming a journalist, she rose to fame in the 90s when she replaced Paula Yates on Channel 4’s The Big Breakfast. She went on to host her own daytime chat show on ITV and in 2001 she famously took part in the first ever series of Celebrity Big Brother, during which she apparently suffered a mental breakdown on TV. She took part in Strictly Come Dancing in 2013, but was the second celebrity to be voted out.

Read more: Vanessa Feltz reveals true story behind her three-stone weight loss

Feltz was married to surgeon Michael Kurer for 17 years and spoke very openly about how she felt when their marriage broke down and she found herself single again. They divorced in 2000 and have two daughters together, Allegra and Saskia. Feltz is now a grandmother.

She lives with her partner of 13 years, singer-songwriter Ben Ofoedu (one half of pop duo Phats & Small), in North London house previously owned by art guru Charles Saatchi.

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