Alex Jones has confessed she was shocked to discover that her The One Show co-host Matt Baker was being paid a significantly higher salary than her after the BBC's top earners list was revealed earlier this year. Having sat side-by-side with Matt on The One Show sofa for six years, 40-year-old Alex admitted she had "assumed" the pair were on the same pay. But the list revealed that 39-year-old Matt was actually receiving £50,000 more than her, for the same presenting role. (The document confirmed that Alex took home between £400,000 and £449,000 for her hosting duties, while former Blue Peter star Matt was earning between £450,000 and £499,000.) Speaking to the Mirror about the gender pay gap at the BBC, Alex said: "Matt and I never discussed wages, but I assumed we got paid the same. I was quite shocked. I guess everybody was."
Alex Jones and Matt Baker have worked on The One Show together since 2011
The news of the pay gap came two months after Alex returned to work from maternity leave, following the birth of her first baby, son Teddy. She has presented The One Show for one year longer than Matt, having joined in 2010 alongside Jason Manford, before Matt stepped in in 2011. Back in July, the BBC's list of top earners caused huge controversy when it was revealed that women were not being paid as much as men, despite doing the same job. Just one third of its highest-paid stars were women, with seven men being paid more than the BBC's top-earning female presenter, Claudia Winkleman. In total, 62 of the 96 people on the list were men, and half of all the women included appeared in the lowest pay band.
Alex welcomed her son Teddy in January of this year
Speaking to the Daily Mail's You magazine in April, Alex opened up about her role on The One Show, and admitted she had been anxious about taking maternity leave. "I'd be lying to say I didn't feel any paranoia when I first left the show, but then you get over it because you realise there's nothing you can do about it," she shared. "At the same time, you hope they're doing a good job because you want a show to come back to – it's a balance. But anyone who says there's no paranoia is lying. It's healthy, I think – it shows you respect the job and you care about it."