Vanessa Feltz joins TalkTV after announcing her departure from the BBC

Vanessa Feltz has announced that she is joining TalkTV after leaving the BBC after nearly 20 years on its radio stations.

The 60-year-old will replace Jeremy Kyle as presenter of the fledgling network’s three-hour drive-in show from September 5.

Kyle, meanwhile, is set to host a new primetime show on TalkTV that will launch in the fall.

Feltz said: “The lure of a retreat lying on a lounge chair while the fragrant Ben (Ofoedu, his partner) peeled a grape for me was fleeting.

“While there are politicians to approach, fat cats to flatten, scams to expose and lovely listeners to defend, it is my mission to blow fire into the microphone.

“After an elegant stint at the BBC, I am effervescent at the invitation to unveil my hitherto hidden side on Talk TV.

“I will relish a full debate and the chance to finally have a passionate personal point of view. Even better, I’ll be in charge of drivetime. Lord what a luxury.

“After years of starting at 3:30 in the morning, I will have a show without an alarm clock.

“If I terrified Mayor Sadiq Khan so much that he never dared set foot in my studio without nearly sleeping, tune in to see what I can accomplish in eight hours of sleep.”

News UK broadcasting chairman Scott Taunton said: “Vanessa Feltz is not only a world-class broadcaster, she is also a national treasure. I’m thrilled to have her join TalkTV’s stellar roster of talent.

“Without need for revival, I’m sure our viewers and listeners will benefit from the full force of Feltz.”

In July, Feltz announced she was leaving her shows on BBC Radio 2 and BBC Radio London, joining a number of established presenters leaving the broadcaster.

Paul O’Grady (67) hosted his final show on Radio 2 earlier this month, while Steve Wright (also 67) is due to sign his weekday afternoon show on the station in September.

In recently released BBC figures, Feltz was one of just three women among the top 10 highest-paid talents on air, with her salary of £400,000-£404,999 putting her in eighth place.

Zoe Ball and Fiona Bruce were the other two hosts to make the top 10.

Feltz began presenting the Radio 2 Early Breakfast Show in January 2011, from 5 a.m. to 6:30 a.m., which was extended to 4 a.m. starting in January 2021.

In addition to covering daily news, his shows featured such features as Famous Last Words, Jolly Good Fellows, The Feltz Philological Challenge and Early Bird Earworms.

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