Gay rights activist Peter Tatchell has said that TV executives should chose a wider range of gay presenters, not just “camp and cliched” stereotypes.

Speaking to Stage magazine, he said: “I am not saying Graham Norton and Alan Carr should be taken off TV. I am just fed up with the way this camp, cliched stereotype is mostly the only one that gets broadcast.”

He continued: “Gay comedians like Graham Norton and Alan Carr are great, but terribly cliched and stereotypical. They pander to very tired archetypes of gay men and are just a continuation of John Inman and Larry Grayson.

“It shows little imagination and can reinforce prejudices. The problem is not that they are camp comedians, but that they are the only kind of gay comedian that have major TV programmes.”

“Heterosexual audiences like laughing at gay men and so people like Alan Carr and Graham Norton fit that bill,” he added.

However, Tatchell said he thought that producers were far less likely to pander to lesbian stereotypes.

A spokesman for Carr refused to comment, while Norton could not be contacted.