When does Vernon Kay start on BBC Radio 2?

The wait is almost over!

a close up of new BBC Radio 2 host Vernon Kay smiling for the camera, wearing a grey blazer
(Image credit: Future/Getty)

The countdown is officially on! The BBC have shared when Vernon Kay starts on BBC Radio 2.

He certainly has some big shoes to fill, having been appointed Ken Bruce's replacement after the DJ announced his departure from the station after 31 years. Vernon is set to take over as BBC Radio 2's new mid-morning presenter, keeping listeners company from late breakfast to lunch with some great tunes and cracking celebrity guest interviews.

Ken Bruce's last show has been and gone, with the legendary broadcaster having now started at Greatest Hits Radio.Vernon Kay is yet to begin his new BBC Radio 2 show and listeners are eager to know when this will be. Here's all the juicy details.

When does Vernon Kay start on BBC Radio 2?

The BBC have confirmed that Vernon Kay will start on Radio 2 on May 15, 2023. Listeners can expect good songs, celebrity guests, a new daily music quiz and some special live performances. 

"In the first few weeks of his new show, Vernon will welcome two new Piano Room sessions - Def Leppard on Thursday 18 May and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds on Thursday 1 June," confirmed the boradcaster. Each artist will perform a classic track, a new song and a cover version, which listeners can hear live on Vernon's show or catch up with via BBC Sounds and BBC iPlayer after.

"To be hosting the new Radio 2 mid-morning show is a total privilege," says Kay." It’s going to be an unforgettable start to what promises to be an amazing journey. And to have two music legends coming up in the Radio 2 Piano Room is a dream come true."

Kay already presents Dance Sounds of the 90s on Radio 2 and BBC Sounds, so is no stranger to the station. He's also stepped in to cover for Zoe Ball's Breakfast Show, Steve Wright in the Afternoon, Rylan on Saturday and Dermot O’Leary.

Kay's radio career began at Radio 1 in 2004, where he presented Saturday and Sunday mid-morning shows up until 2012. Then in 2015 he moved to Radio X to present the mid-morning show there for two years.

Vernon's predecessor Ken Bruce called Kay "a lovely bloke and I wish him all the best".

Helen Thomas, head of Radio 2, said she was "thrilled to welcome Vernon" to the mid-morning show on Radio 2.

"He’s a hugely talented, warm and witty host, who has already proved himself to be a firm favourite with our listeners when he’s presented many and varied shows across the station. I can’t wait to hear his brilliant new show."

What time will Vernon Kay be on BBC Radio 2?

When Vernon's show begins in May, listeners can expect to tune in and hear him from 9.30am through to Midday. Vernon replaces the since-departed Ken Bruce and will be heading up the mid-morning slot on BBC Radio 2 on Mondays to Fridays.

"Making your mid-mornings memorable, Vernon's bringing big tunes, big names and big laughs to weekdays from 9.30am-12pm," the broadcaster confirmed. Vernon's show will feature new daily music quiz Ten To The Top every morning at 10.30am, with the classic Tracks Of My Years following at 11.40am. They'll also be usual Record and Album Of The Week, plus the latest travel news from Richie Anderson.

When Kay was announced as Bruce's replacement, many listeners were quick to throw their support behind the Family Fortunes star. "Congratulations to on taking over from Ken Bruce, I love listening to you when you fill in for @ZoeTheBall," wrote one Twitter user.

Another tweeted: "Fantastic news! Do people not realise that the people who listened to radio 1 when vernon, Sara, Jo, Scott and Zoe were on are now in our 40s and 50s as are the djs? I love the lineup on radio 2 including most of the other shows, it’s a great mix."

It certainly seems Kay already has some listeners who'll be tuning in for his new radio show.

Who is filling in on BBC Radio 2 currently?

DJ Gary Davies is currently filling the gap between Bruce's departure and Kay's first show. The 65-year-old began his temporary takeover of the mid-morning slot on March 7, 2023

Ken Bruce's last show on BBC Radio 2 was on Friday, March 3. The DJ's exit came a lot sooner than expected, with Ken originally set to leave on Friday, March 23, instead. The broadcaster confirmed his early depature with fans online. He tweeted: "I had intended fulfilling my contract until the end of March but the BBC has decided it wants me to leave earlier. Let’s enjoy the week ahead!"

Gary Davies has often filled in when Zoe Ball has been absent from her morning show and is well-known to many BBC Radio 2 listeners for his Sounds of the Eighties show on Fridays at 8pm.

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Emily Stedman
Features Editor

Emily Stedman is the former Features Editor for GoodTo covering all things TV, entertainment, royal, lifestyle, health and wellbeing. Boasting an encyclopaedic knowledge on all things TV, celebrity and royals, career highlights include working at HELLO! Magazine and as a royal researcher to Diana biographer Andrew Morton on his book Meghan: A Hollywood Princess. In her spare time, Emily can be found eating her way around London, swimming at her local Lido or curled up on the sofa binging the next best Netflix show.