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The ongoing success of What Not to Wear, despite Trinny and Susannah's defection from the BBC, proves that viewers prefer good formats to famous faces

By Christopher Hird   February 2007

The BBC’s hopes for an above-inflation rise in the price of the licence fee to cover increased costs and the digital television switchover have been dashed, as was widely expected. A regular feature of the case against the BBC getting more money is the large sums that it pays to big-name presenters. As a public body, the BBC is uniquely handicapped in not being able to keep such details confidential, while also being expected to compete with its commercial rivals by delivering the large audiences that these stars help to attract. Yet it may be that not being able to…

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