BBC Radio Foyle Breakfast Show airs for final time

time:2023-06-03 01:55:16source:BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation) author:news

BBC Radio Foyle's Breakfast Show has aired for the final time after more than a decade on the airwaves.

It comes after BBC NI announced a number of Radio Foyle and Radio Ulster schedule and programme changes.

A half-hour breakfast news programme entitled The North West Today is set to replace the two-hour show from Monday.

Presenter Elaine McGee thanked listeners "for letting us into your life".

BBC Northern Ireland has said that the new 30-minute morning programme would "have an exclusive focus on stories from and about the north west".

A BBC spokesperson said they are also enhancing the BBC's digital news coverage from the station.

The National Union Of Journalists (NUJ) have said that 10 staff currently remain at risk of redundancy and are in the process of balloting their members over industrial action.

The BBC has said it expects staffing levels to remain unchanged.

McGee and co-host David Hunter paid tribute to listeners as they signed off the programme for the final time on Friday.

The pair closed the show with a montage of highlights from its 13-year run before going out on Teenage Kicks by Derry punk band, The Undertones.

"Thank you, thank you. Above all thank you for listening to us, trusting us and choosing us and letting us into your life - I hope we have been a friend to you, like you have been for us," Elaine McGee said.

"I do believe the connection local radio creates with its listeners is magic.

"We may be meeting in a different way from here on in, but magic and connection like ours can't be cut and no one can take that away and your voices will always matter here on Radio Foyle.

"We will say goodbye for now and for the last time from all the team at the BBC Radio Foyle Breakfast Show, good morning."

BBC NI Director Adam Smyth has said the upcoming changes at the station "reflect the commitment to Foyle as a production centre for local and region-wide output".

Hourly news bulletins on Radio Foyle will continue Monday to Friday.

Proposed cuts to jobs and programmes in Londonderry had attracted protests from some politicians and community leaders.

Some assembly members had previously expressed concerns that cuts to programmes on Foyle would turn it into "BBC Greater Belfast".

The breakfast programme which has covered some of the biggest news stories in the north west has garnered multiple awards for its journalism over the years.

Previous Breakfast Show presenters include BBC News NI's Political Editor Enda McClafferty and Radio Ulster's Sarah Brett.

Other schedule changes in the station include the Mark Patterson show moving to the earlier 12:00 to 13:30 slot.

That means that BBC Radio Ulster's Talkback will not be broadcast on Radio Foyle, but it will be available on BBC Sounds and digital radio.

Hugo Duncan's weekday programme from 13:30 to 15:00 will be broadcast on both Radio Ulster and Radio Foyle but it will be presented and produced from the Foyle studios in Londonderry.

That includes a new 90-minute programme presented by Vinny Hurrell and Cate Conway from 18:00 to 19:30 from Monday to Thursday.

Foyle's weekday Stephen McCauley Shows has also come to an end being replaced with a three-hour programme on Friday evenings.

Existing Radio Ulster evening programmes, including those presented by Ralph McLean and Eve Blair, will be broadcast from Radio Foyle's studios.

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