BBC awards £15m bonus despite redundancy plans

The BBC has been criticised for paying out more than £15m in bonuses to around 10,000 staff, while proposing to axe 4,000 jobs.

The bonuses follow BBC chairman Michael Grade’s announcement in July that the organisation would cut bonuses back, so that no executive would receive more than 10% of their salary.

Gerry Morrissey, assistant general secretary of broadcasting union Bectu, said that giving one employee a bonus while making another redundant sent out the wrong message.

The bonus figure was revealed after a freedom of information request was made to BBC personnel director Stephen Dando, Broadcast magazine revealed.

The £15m is not thought to include the £546,000 of bonuses paid to members of the executive board at BBC worldwide.

The average bonus paid out to a senior executive in the previous financial year was around 25% of their salary, according to figures in the BBC’s annual report, and accounts for 2004-05. Deputy-director general Mark Byford picked up an extra £92,000 on top of his £351,000 salary and benefits of £14,000.

A BBC spokesman said: “Even during a period of cost-cutting, it is vital to reward staff who deliver high-quality work.”   



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