Why is Annie Mac leaving Radio 1 and who is replacing her? All you need to know as she does her last show after 17 years.
Annie Mac is set to play her last evening show tonight as the Radio 1 DJ bids farewell to the station after 17 years.
The Irish DJ, broadcaster, and writer is the latest household name announced to be leaving BBC radio in recent weeks.
It comes after Nick Grimshaw announced he is leaving Radio 1 after 14 years at the station and he joined her on her second to last show last night. But for fans of Radio 1, we look at why she is leaving and what’s next in store for her…
Why is Annie Mac leaving Radio 1?
Long-standing DJ Annie Mac is leaving BBC Radio 1 in order to spend more time with her family.
The disc jockey has worked at the station for the last 17 years – with her show being aired at 6pm on weeknights.
But being part of the unsociable evening slot was a factor in her decision to leave.
She told Radio Times back in April, “I wanted to be around in the evenings as my youngest kid starts school in September – but really, lots of things have come together to make this decision feel very easy.”
But the decision to walk away from her job hasn’t been an easy one. She added, “It was definitely not spontaneous, it had been on my mind for a while.”
At the time of her exit announcement, she uploaded a snap and a lengthy post which started, ‘It’s time to tell you, my listeners, that after 17 years, my last show on @bbcradio1 will take place on 30 July 2021.’
She continued to explain, ‘It’s hard to articulate what this job has meant to me. It started in 2004 with Annie Mac’s Mashup on Thursday evenings. Then it was the big move to Fridays. Sunday nights was Switch with Grimmy and then The Musical Hot Water Bottle. Since March 2015 it has been every weeknight with the flagship new music show.’
But as she went on to admit she still finds joy in being a DJ, telling her fans, ‘I’m still in awe of the magic of music radio. Of the responsibility of handling these songs that are so powerful, they can stop you in your tracks and make your emotions soar. I have never not walked out of the studio feeling lighter and happier than when I walked in.’
Where is Annie Mac going after leaving Radio 1?
Annie Mac will be writing more fiction and creating podcasts following her departure from her Radio 1 show.
She shared the details on her Instagram, when she posted, ‘I would like more time to write fiction and to create podcasts. I also love the idea of leaving the party ( and make no mistake working at Radio 1 does feel like a party ) with a huge smile on my face, when I’m still having the most fun I can have.’
Annie recently released a new book called Mother Mother, and some of her colleagues from BBC Radio joined her for the launch.
But she hasn’t ruled out a return to radio in the future.
And while some are still coming to terms with Annie leaving Radio 1, she’s assured fans it wasn’t on bad terms.
She told Radio Times, “There’s something very nice about the feeling of steering your own ship. I want to leave feeling good, with nothing but goodwill on both sides. I love the BBC and hope at some point I can come back. It’s not walking away from radio, it’s just walking away from that slot.”
Her Instagram post confirmed, ‘I will be coming back to radio broadcasting when the time is right. For now though, I would like to say thank you.’
She gave thanks to the artists, to BBC radio management, and most importantly the listeners, to which she confessed, ‘In my time on Radio 1, I have fallen in and out of love, moved homes, climbed up the career ladder, got married and become a mother twice over, alongside you doing your versions of the same. Thank you for allowing me into your lives. Thank you for brightening my days. Thank you thank you thank you for listening.’
Who is taking over Annie Mac?
Clara Amfo is taking over Annie Mac’s 6pm Radio 1 show on weeknights. Speaking about the handover, Clara said, “I’m such a fan of this show, the artists that it has championed and to be receiving the baton from Annie who I love and respect makes it extra special for me.”
Radio 1 boss Aled Haydn Jones said, “Annie Mac is quite simply a legend,” and added that Clara is one of the most influential voices in the music industry.
He added, “She has an incredible affinity for discovering new music, which makes her perfect to be the face of it for the industry and for Radio 1. We know our listeners will love what she brings to the show.”
Meanwhile, Clara, who has been broadcasting from her bedroom. currently runs the daytime slot – which includes the Live Lounge – will be taken over by Rickie, Melvin and Charlie.
The trio said, “To be given the opportunity to present the Live Lounge is just an absolute dream, a show we all adore and have so much love, passion, and respect for.”
Who is Annie Mac’s husband?
Annie Mac is married to DJ Toddla T, formerly known as Thomas Bell. The pair tied the knot in 2018 and have two sons – whom she prefers to not name, aged four and seven.
Aside from holidaying together as a family, the pair have recorded their own podcast on YouTube and you can watch it below…
How old is Annie Mac?
Annie Mac is 42 years old. She was born in Dublin and attended Wesley College in the capital before studying English literature at Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Annie currently lives in Queen’s Park, London with her family.