DJ Simon Mayo is leaving BBC Radio 2 as the Drivetime show he presents with Jo Whiley is to end

Simon Mayo
Simon Mayo

In a string of tweets Simon Mayo explained his decision to leave BBC Radio 2, as it was revealed that the Drivetime show he presents with Jo Whiley will end.

He tweeted: "A few things to say. Very sadly, I have decided to move on from Radio 2. Sad to leave the show, sad to leave Jo, sad to leave Wogan House (I thought I'd be dragged out aged 120). But circumstances change..."

"Juggling my writing and radio has become increasingly tricky (a nice problem to have). I've just signed a new 2 book deal with the nice folk at Transworld and they'll be expecting something half decent before too long".

"On top of that my Itch books are about to be filmed for television in Australia and the work turning Mad Blood Stirring into a movie continues apace".

Page 2: 10:12

Mayo continued: "I know, I know, I'm as surprised at this turn of events as you. But at my grand old age to be setting off on these brand new trails is enormous fun. And all the more so for being so unexpected. There are, however, only so many hours in a day".

"I'll continue with the (flagship) film show on 5Live with Mark Kermode and, beyond that, other radio adventures beckon! But for now it's just the sadness of leaving. Radio 2 has been a wonderful place for me - my happiest radio I think. Our listeners are really quite extraordinary".

He added: "One other thing. Maybe it needs to be said, maybe not but so there is no room for argument I'll be clear. I've loved working with the exceptional Jo Whiley and when the show was 'reconfigured' she was my first and only choice".

Page 3: 10:20

Mayo continued: "Some of the abuse she (Whiley) has had here has been appalling. Support for a show is one thing, assaulting the dignity of a warm-hearted and loyal friend is another."

"So by all means discuss what's happening here, but let's keep some civility. Thank you. Here endeth the lesson. And (one very final thing), as anyone who has worked here will attest, the producers and APs are a class apart. Brilliant production teams make our jobs a joy".

Page 4: 10:25

Whiley will launch a new show in January 2019, to air from 7-9pm, Monday to Thursday, the BBC said.

She will also continue to present the BBC Radio 2 In Concert series and will still stand-in for Ken Bruce in 2019 when he is away.

In a statement, she said: "I'm incredibly sad that Simon has decided to leave Radio 2. He's a brilliant broadcaster, a great friend and I really will miss working with him.

"However, I'm very much looking forward to hosting a new show for a new year which will have music at the very heart of it as well as guests and live sessions. Dream show, actually. Can't wait!"