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QI host Sandi Toksvig earns 40% less than Stephen Fry

Toksvig also said she earns the same amount as regular panellist Alan Davies

Sandi Toksvig took over from Stephen Fry in October 2016.
Sandi Toksvig took over from Stephen Fry in October 2016. PA

QI host Sandi Toksvig has revealed she is paid 40% of what the programme's former host Stephen Fry used to earn for his work on the comedy panel show.

The 60-year-old took over from Fry in October 2016 and her third series as host is set to begin on Monday.

Toksvig was asked a question about her QI salary by an audience member at the Women's Equality Party conference, where she gave a speech on feminist economics.

She said: "I have recently discovered I get 40% of what Stephen used to get. And I get the same pay as Alan Davies, who is not the host.

"I temper this with the fact that I love the show and I'm the first woman to host such a show."

The Great British Bake Off presenter's disclosure produced gasps from the crowd at the event.

Following the question-and-answer session, Toksvig, co-founder of the Women's Equality Party, added: "I love QI and the brilliant team who produce it.

"John Lloyd and the team champion women on the show.

"I was asked a question at the Women's Equality Party conference that I felt I had to answer, because the issues with equal pay and the gender pay gap cut right across the media and all industries and all areas of life.

"Until now I had held back from talking about this because this is not about me.

"However, the lack of transparency around pay is a big part of the problem and I hope that being open, I can support women across the country whose work is undervalued."

TV presenter Richard Bacon commented on a video posted by Catherine Mayer, co-founder of the Women's Equality Party, showing a clip of Toksvig talking about the pay disparity.

Alongside the clip Mayer wrote: "HUGE GASP in room at @WEP_UK conference as @sanditoksvig reveals she gets just 40% of what Stephen Fry got for hosting #QI and only the same as Alan Davies. #WE2018."

Bacon commented on Mayer's post, writing: "Yes. Because he's Stephen Fry. Some talent costs more than others. And sometimes, it's got nothing to do with gender."

A BBC spokesman said: "QI is made by an independent production company who manage their own talent fees."

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