Announcing Bruce’s departure on 17 January, Radio 2 tweeted: “We have some news… After 31 years of presenting the 9.30am-midday weekday show Ken Bruce has decided to leave.
“We’re going to miss you lots Ken and want to congratulate you on a fantastic career at the BBC.”
When is Ken Bruce’s last Radio 2 show?
Bruce’s final show on Radio 2 will be on Friday 3 March at the usual time of 9.30am, finishing at midday.
He said on Twitter last week: “I will be presenting my last show on Radio 2 next Friday. 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!”
Bruce said he had been given “no explanation” for his early departure.
He abruptly ended a meeting with Radio 2 boss, Helen Thomas, last Friday when told the news, i understands.
“What a thoroughly shabby way to treat someone after over 30 years of service,” said former Radio 1 and 6 music presenter Liz Kershaw, reflecting the views expressed online of many of Bruce’s loyal listeners.
Handing over to Bruce at 9.30am, Radio 2 Breakfast Show presenter Zoe Ball told him: “Five more days of Ken Bruce. We’re going to make such a fuss of you. You’ll be desperate to leave the building.”
Bruce replied: “Please don’t. It’ll be a life sentence to you having to listen to this for another five days.”
BBC insiders say it was not practical to allow Bruce the “long goodbye” he wanted.
Where is Ken Bruce going after Radio 2?
Bruce will host a new daily show for Bauer’s station Greatest Hits Radio, taking his iconic PopMaster game with him.
He will present his first show on Greatest Hits on Monday 3 April, and will then be on air every weekday in the mid-morning slot, from 10am until 1pm.
For his new show, Bruce promises “me and my musings and all the great records you know and love from the 70s, 80s and 90s”.
Bruce said that after 45 years on the BBC it was “time for a change”, explaining: “Nothing stays the same forever and I have decided the time is right for me to move on from Radio 2 when I reach the end of my current contract in March.
“It’s been a tremendously happy time for me. I’ve made many friends and worked with many wonderful colleagues.”
He added: “I would stress that this is entirely my decision but some new opportunities have come up and I would like to continue my career in a slightly different way in the next few years, the details of which will be revealed shortly.
“I will always be very proud of my association with the BBC and Radio 2 in particular, and I’d like to thank everyone who has helped to make the mid-morning show a success.”
Bruce joined the BBC in 1977, and spent a year presenting the Radio 2 Breakfast Show before starting in the mid-morning slot in 1986.
After brief forays into late nights and early mornings, he returned to mid mornings at the start of 1992, where he has remained ever since. He has also fronted Radio 2’s coverage of the Eurovision Song Contest since 1988.
How can I listen to Greatest Hits Radio?
According to the Greatest Hits website, the station can be found on FM and DAB. You can access the specific regional frequencies for the show on Planet Radio.
The station already features in its presenting ranks the likes of Simon Mayo (who left Radio 2 in 2018), Martin Kemp, Jackie Brambles and Pat Sharp.
Who is replacing Ken Bruce on Radio 2?
Vernon Kay has been confirmed as the new presenter of Radio 2’s mid-morning show.
He will take over in May, with Gary Davies taking the reins on temporary basis until then.
Kay currently presents Radio 2’s Dance Sounds of the ’90s, and has previously hosted shows on Radio 1 and Radio X.
“I look forward to playing some of the best music in the world while in the company of the Radio 2 listeners, who I feel I’ve got to know over the last 18 months. It’s a dream come true to join the Radio 2 family and I can’t wait to start,” Kay said.
Ms Thomas, the head of Radio 2, said: “Radio 2 is home to some of the UK’s best-loved presenters, and I’m thrilled to welcome Vernon to mid-mornings 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.”