‘Do you think that you got the top BBC job because you’re female?’

The woman in line to become the new chairwoman of the BBC Trust will be asked whether she thinks she got the job because she is female, an MP has said.

Philip Davies, the MP for Shipley and a member of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, told the Guardian that Rona Fairhead will be grilled next week on her vision for the corporation.

Ms Fairhead, the former chief executive of the Financial Times group is the Government’s “preferred candidate” to lead the Trust, replacing Lord Patten who stood down in May.

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She will appear before the committee on September 9.

On Sunday, Culture Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Rona Fairhead is an exceptional individual with a highly impressive career history. Her experience of working with huge multinational corporations will undoubtedly be a real asset at the BBC Trust.”

Mr Davies claimed he would ask Ms Fairhead some tough questions.

“We will want to find out her vision for the BBC – what she thinks it is doing well, what it is doing badly and where it needs to improve, and her lack of experience in broadcasting and regulation and whether or not that will be a problem,” he said.

“Some people might argue that is a good thing, coming to it with a fresh pair of eyes. I go into it with an open mind.”

He also said the question of Ms Fairhead’s gender and its relevance to the role is a valid question after reports the Government wanted to place a woman in the senior role for the first time.

Ms Fairhead has said: “The BBC is a great British institution packed with talented people and I am honoured to have the opportunity to be the chairman of the BBC Trust.”