Terry Wogan is stepping down from presenting BBC Radio 2′s weekday breakfast show after two stints in the slot totalling 27 years.
He will be replaced by Chris Evans, who moves from hosting drivetime to present the breakfast show from next year.
However, Wogan will continue on Radio 2 with a new weekend radio programme launching early next year.
Wogan, whose show is the most popular breakfast programme in the UK, according to official figures, told listeners today: “This is the hardest thing I have ever done in my broadcasting career, to say goodbye to you in the mornings. But if not this year, when? Five years, 10? I’d rather leave while we’re in love, as the song says, while the programme is the most popular on British radio, while we still delight in each other’s company.”
Bob Shennan, Radio 2 controller, paid tribute to Wogan’s contribution to “the success of Radio 2 over the last 16 years”, which he described as “immeasurable”.
“His unique talent has provided millions of listeners with the soundtrack to their morning. Terry is unequivocally the most accomplished radio presenter of his generation,” he added.
Wogan first fronted the Radio 2 Breakfast Show in April 1972 at the age of 34, but left in December 1984 to develop his TV career.
He returned to the network in January 1993, and has hosted Wake Up To Wogan ever since.