Sandi Toksvig praises Carrie Gracie for speaking out over unequal pay at the BBC

The Great British Bake Off presenter said there is still ‘work to do’.

Press Association
Last updated: 7 December 2018 - 1.30pm

Sandi Toksvig has praised Carrie Gracie and the 200 female journalists who spoke out against unequal pay at the BBC.

Talking on the red carpet at the Women in Film and TV (WFTV) awards, she said: “Things have changed a lot in that things are being talked about that weren’t talked about before, but we’re still not at a level playing field.

“So one of the people who is presenting today is Carrie Gracie, and she is so brave, the former BBC China editor, and the 200 women journalists who stood up and said, ‘this is not fair’.

“We still don’t have equal pay, we still don’t have equal rights, so there is still work to do.”

Women in Film and TV Awards 2018 – London
Sandi Toksvig hailed the 200 women at the BBC who spoke out against unequal pay (Ian West/PA)

Ms Gracie resigned from her role in January in protest at inequalities at the BBC, accusing the corporation of having a “secretive and illegal pay culture”.

Great British Bake Off presenter Toksvig, 60, was being honoured with the WFTV presenter award during the awards ceremony in London.

British actress Juliet Stevenson was also being honoured with a lifetime achievement award and said she had worked all her life “shifting the images of women on stage and screen, shifting them away from cliche”.

Toksvig said: “The equivalent cliches (in broadcasting) is that women ought to retire when they are 35 and that there’s a type of woman presenter, and there isn’t any type – from Lorraine to Claudia Winkleman to Victoria Coren Mitchell, the range is immense and fabulous.”

BBC gender pay gap
Carrie Gracie speaks to the media about unfair pay at the BBC (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

Asked whether she felt comfortable being seen as a role model for young women in the creative industries, Toksvig replied: “I hope, if in some small way, young women can look at me … I’m 60 and a grandmother, and go, ‘That’s fine. You just carry on having a career’.

“Weirdly, I am still able to have a cogent thought and I am a coming up to my 40th year in the business.”

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