New chairman Patten rejects BBC car
The new chairman of the BBC Trust, Chris Patten, has rejected the idea of being chauffeured around by a full-time BBC car and BBC driver.
Lord Patten was told this week that he was entitled to both perks as part of his new high-powered job.
But to everyone's surprise - and amusement - Patten suddenly announced that he preferred to go by public transport. He knew the locations of underground stations and bus-stops, he told colleagues.
A specific salaried BBC driver had even been designated to do the job, and will now be assigned to another BBC big-wig.
In rejecting a full-time driver, Lord Patten is following in the footsteps of the former Labour minister Chris Mullin, who turned down his government car.
"Unlike him, I have a Freedom Pass," Patten told me today. "I occasionally use a cab but why would I need a chauffeur?"
A source close to the driver estimates Patten's decision may save the BBC Trust as much as £100,000 a year.