James said: “I’ve had two years of being called a part-timer by the listeners for deserting them on Fridays so it’s time I actually put a shift in and be with them all week. And in any case, I’d only be at home looking for stupid things online so I might as well go and share the nonsense with everyone.”
It was announced that Huw Stephens, Phil Taggart and Dev will exit Radio 1 at the end of 2020. Stephens will continue to host across BBC Radio Cymru and 6 Music. Taggart will continue as a presenter with BBC Radio Ulster. Dev will be leaving to focus on other presenting opportunities.
Radio 1 will welcome five new presenters across the schedule.
Early Breakfast on Fridays will become a brand new show dedicated to showcasing new and emerging presenting talent. The first to take on the monthly rotation slot will be Joel Mitchell, followed by Mollie Finn and Fee Mak in subsequent months.
Mitchell, who has previously presented on BBC Radio Leeds, and Mak, who hosts the drivetime slot on London’s Westside Radio, both hosted their first ever show on Radio 1 in 2019 when they were selected from over 1,100 applicants to take on a guest slot on the station over the festive period.
Finn will take on the slot as her first job in radio after previously volunteering as a presenter at Bournemouth University’s student station Nerve Radio.
Two brand new presenters will join station, with Sian Eleri becoming the host of Radio 1’s Chillest Show and Gemma Bradley becoming the host of BBC Music Introducing on Radio 1.
Eleri currently works at BBC Radio Cymru. Like Joel Mitchell and Fee Mak, she hosted her first show on Radio 1 in 2019 after applying for the station’s festive guest presenter initiative. Northern Irish presenter Gemma Bradley joined BBC Radio Ulster in 2019 as the host of ATL Introducing. She will make her debut on Radio 1 in the new year.
In further changes at the station, Arielle Free, who joined Radio 1 in 2019, will become the new host of Radio 1 Dance and Radio 1’s Early Breakfast (Monday to Thursday, 4am-7am), moving from her current role as host of Weekend Early Breakfast.
Current Early Breakfast host Adele Roberts will become the new host of Radio 1’s Weekend Breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays, 7am-10.30am, with Matt Edmondson and Mollie King moving to co-host 1pm- 4pm, Friday to Sunday.
Aled Haydn Jones, head of BBC Radio 1, said: “This is a really exciting time for Radio 1 as we prepare to welcome the next generation of talent: Sian and Gemma are going to bring some brilliant energy to our weekend line up, and with our new Friday morning rotation we’re going to be hearing from some fantastic new presenters over the coming months.
"The listener is at the heart of everything we do at Radio 1, and we look forward to introducing a fresh new schedule as we continue to deliver the entertainment, escapism and new music that our audiences know and love.”
Haydn Jones added: “Dev, Huw and Phil have been incredibly valuable members of the Radio 1 family over the years. They are all excellent broadcasters and I’m pleased we’ll be hearing more from Huw and Phil elsewhere on BBC Radio. I’d like to thank each of them for their contribution to Radio 1 and wish them all the best for the future.”
PHOTO: (L-R) Sian Eleri, Joel Mitchell, Fee Mak, Gemma Bradley, Mollie Finn