Former BBC director general Mark Thompson spent thousands on expenses for travel to the US in months before he quit to join New York Times
Former BBC chief spent almost 6,000 in return flight to San Francisco
BBC senior managers' hotel and rail expenses doubles since 2009
Despite cutbacks to budgets, three executives received pay rises up to 20pc
20:37 GMT, 6 December 2012
Expenses: Former BBC director general Mark Thompson, pictured, spent almost 6,000 on travel to the US in his final few months in charge of the corporation
Former BBC director general Mark Thompson spent almost 6,000 on travel to the US in his final few months in charge of the corporation.
Senior managers’ hotel and rail expenses have doubled since 2009, according to new figures for the first financial quarter of the year from the BBC.
They also reveal that despite cutbacks to budgets – three executives received pay rises of up to 20 per cent.
Thompson’s final round of expenses show the executive took a return flight to San Francisco costing 5,789 and then flew on to Los Angeles for 128 as part of a trip in June.
The 55-year-old also enjoyed a 666.55 trip to Berlin during the same month.
It has already been revealed that he took a 3,245.73 return flight to New York in February.
The figures, which detail the expenses and pay of the top 100 executives at the BBC, also showed that despite pledges to keep executive pay in check, some were still enjoying inflation-busting pay rises.
Ben Stephenson, BBC drama commissioning controller, was given a 33,400 pay rise, which is a jump of around 21 per cent to bring his salary to 195,000.
Human resources executive Karl Burnett was given a 10,000 increase to take his pay to 121,000.
Jenny Baxter, controller of production for BBC News, received a boost of 4,545 bringing her salary to 121,200.
A BBC spokesman said the pay rises were due to the executives taking on additional responsibilities or expanded roles.
Insiders also admitted that the BBC’s rail and hotel bills have soared since 2009 because of the move to Salford and the push to make more programmes outside of London.
The broadcaster has set a target that 50 per cent of its content must be made outside the capital, and has moved key shows to the nations and regions.
This has led to a jump in rail and hotel bills – expenses claimed for hotels between April and June this year were 28,318 compared to 16,678 in 2009/10.
Similarly the total cost of rail travel claimed was 45,905 for that quarter, but just two years ago it was 22, 873.
Hike: Insiders admitted that the BBC's rail and hotel bills have soared since 2009 because of the move to Salford and the push to make more programmes outside of London
But the BBC said its overall expenses – taxis, hotels, flights, rail and hospitality combined – were down year-on-year.
A spokesman said: ‘Expenses have risen by one per cent this quarter but are down eight per cent on the previous year.
Successor: Former director general of the BBC George Entwistle, pictured, who was given the position following Mr Thompson's departure
‘Taxi costs in particular have come down by 2 this quarter and are down 57% since publication began in 2009.’
‘Expenses remain within a range that is proportionate to running a media organisation of this size. We continue to be mindful of how we spend public money and to drive down costs wherever possible.’
Thompson was named chief executive of the New York Times in August after months of speculation he had interviewed for the job.
The newspaper had been looking for a replacement since previous boss Janet Robinson stepped down in December.
But the BBC said he did not use his time in America to “find a new role”, insisting his trips had full itineraries relating to his work as director general.
The executive, who was paid more than 670,000 by the BBC last year, took up his new job in November, but has been embroiled in the fallout from the Jimmy Savile scandal.
Thompson had to fly back to the UK at the end of November to give evidence at the Pollard Inquiry, the external investigation into whether management pressure was a factor into the decision to shelve the Newsnight into abuse by Savile.
The issue arose under his tenure at the BBC and critics have questioned Thompson’s involvement in it all.