Gar­den­ers’ Ques­tion Time star’s equal pay

Daily Mail - - News - By Susie Coen TV and Ra­dio Re­porter

KATHY Clugston has re­vealed she is re­ceiv­ing the same salary for Gar­den­ers’ Ques­tion Time as her co-pre­sen­ter Peter Gibbs.

The broad­caster, who will be­come the first per­ma­nent fe­male host in the pro­gramme’s 70-year his­tory, will earn the same amount as Gibbs even though he has worked on it for 15 years.

The Ra­dio 4 news­reader and con­ti­nu­ity an­nouncer, well known for read­ing the Ship­ping Fore­cast, is re­plac­ing Eric Rob­son, 72, who has re­tired af­ter 25 years.

Miss Clugston said: ‘When pay was dis­cussed I said, “Are Peter and I be­ing paid the same?” And I was as­sured that we are and that one of us would never be paid more than the other. And so that was good enough for me.’

The BBC has been ac­cused of ‘dumb­ing down’ the pro­gramme af­ter giv­ing ‘en­thu­si­as­tic am­a­teur’ Miss Clugston the reins. The 49-year-old pre­vi­ously re­vealed that her gar­den­ing ex­pe­ri­ence was lim­ited to ‘house­plants and the odd win­dow box’.

But she said: ‘I’ve not been ap­pointed for my gar­den­ing ex­per­tise; I’ve been ap­pointed for my broad­cast­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. We’re broad­cast­ers and our job is to chair the dis­cus­sion.’

Her first episode will be broad­cast to­day at 3pm.

New role: Kathy Clugston

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