BBC drama and comedy writers get 2% pay rise

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Writers for BBC dramas and comedies have received a 2% increase in pay after negotiations by the Writers’ Guild.

The minimum fee for a single hour-long drama episode will now be £11,760, while a typical half-hour episode of a series will pay at least £5,370.

The pay increase also extends to sketches as part of comedy shows, which will now be paid at a minimum rate of £109 a minute.

The Writers’ Guild claimed these fees were often doubled as an advance against the continuing life of TV shows, including future repeats and DVDs.

Welcoming the pay rise, acting general secretary Ellie Peers said: “The Writers’ Guild of Great Britain successfully argued that screenwriters are worth every penny invested in them, and that investing in writers helps ensure the BBC can continue to produce high-quality comedy and drama.”

In September the Writers’ Guild secured a significant 78% pay rise for drama screenwriters – the first time the industry minimum rate had increased for 13 years.

Former Writers’ Guild general secretary Bernie Corbett warned last year that low pay for writers was to blame for a lack of “working-class voices” on TV.

The new rates came into place on November 1.