All the buzz about this year’s Strictly Come Dancing has been centered around two dancers – the first time that the hit BBC1 show featured same-sex couples.

But last night, as the 18th series began, the spotlight turned to the compensation of the two presenters.

The Mail on Sunday can reveal that Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman are waltzing all the way to the bank with fees that are not included in the BBC’s list of its highest paid presenters – despite the license fee-funded broadcaster dedicating the transparency on its stars. ‘ wages.

Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman (pictured) waltz to the bank with fees not included in BBC’s list of its highest paid presenters

Daly and Winkleman are each paid £ 350,000 to host the series, but this is excluded from the list as Strictly is produced by the company’s subsidiary, BBC Studios, which became its own in 2018.

As a result, Daly, 51, does not appear on the list at all, while Winkleman, 48, is in 13th place with between £ 365,000 and £ 369,999, which includes her work as a Radio 2 presenter. .

If Claudia’s Strictly Fee were included – as well as around £ 150,000 for presenting BBC1’s The Best Home Cook, which is also directed by an independent producer – she would be third on the list with around £ 800,000, just below Gary Lineker and Zoe. Ball.

Viewers were introduced to this year's celebrity and professional dancing couples, with the very first same-sex couple being former Olympic boxer Nicola Adams and Katya Jones.

Viewers were introduced to this year’s celebrity and professional dancing couples, with the very first same-sex couple being former Olympic boxer Nicola Adams and Katya Jones.

Winkleman is worth around £ 9million and recently wrote a bestselling book, Quite, which invites fans ‘into his world’.

Meanwhile, Daly boosted his BBC salaries with two lucrative support contracts – a bedding range with Next and another with health supplement company Wellwoman.

The Next collection is valued at £ 100,000 for Daly and includes throws costing £ 120 and comforter sets costing £ 140.

A source Strictly said: ‘The show is real money for both.

All the buzz around this year’s Strictly Come Dancing has been centered around two dancers – the first time BBC1’s hit show has featured same-sex couples.

“ Although he makes a lot of fuss about the transparency of his stars’ salaries, there still seems to be a gaping loophole that allows bosses to avoid reporting real money by paying them through the commercial arm, BBC Studios. ”

Last night, viewers were introduced to this year’s celebrity and professional dancing couples, with the very first gay couple being former Olympic boxer Nicola Adams and Katya Jones.

Jones, who two years ago was embroiled in a ‘Curse of Strictly’ scandal after being caught kissing her partner Seann Walsh on a London street while married to her strictly professional mate Neil Jones, beat the other dancers to take what they considered. be a coveted role.

PS WE HAVE ALL SEEN WHO LOOKING BEFORE, JACQUI!

Jacqui Smith rolled back the years by joining pro Anton du Beke, left – recalling memories of when, in 2007, she was Home Secretary and had him around her neck for wearing a ‘ ‘barmaid low cut’ to brief MPs on terrorist attacks, right.

At 57, she spends “the time of my life” on Strictly.

Last night she and Adams danced together for the first time as part of a group.

They will do their first dance alone, judged by the jury of Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel Horwood, next Saturday.

Adams said last night: ‘I’m super excited to be associated with Katya, I’m absolutely buzzing. Katya and I just did a little dance routine there and it felt really good, we were really in sync.

A little taste of what’s to come. Last year’s winner, Oti Mabuse, was paired with comedian Bill Bailey.

Strictly the bosses beat the odds for the show to continue this year despite Covid restrictions.

There will only be 12 partnerships this year – three fewer than usual – and the race will only last eight weeks instead of the usual 12.

Contestants include Good Morning Britain host Ranvir Singh, actress Caroline Quentin and BBC radio DJ Clara Amfo.

BBC executives hope they can invite a small cabaret-style audience to the live shows with the appropriate social distancing.

Bruno Tonioli will not be part of the jury this year because he plays in the American version of Strictly, Dancing With The Stars.

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