Martha Kearney is to take over as presenter of BBC Radio 4's The World At One as permanent replacement for the late Nick Clarke. Kearney is currently the political editor and presenter of BBC Television's Newsnight programme and also a regular host of Woman's Hour on Radio 4.
Temporary World At One host Shaun Ley will continue to front the programme on Fridays, and will also become the regular presenter of The World This Weekend. Ley has been covering on the daily programme since Nick Clarke lost his battle with cancer late last year.
Martha is no stranger to radio, having started her broadcasting career at LBC and IRN, where she was a phone operator on the Brian Hayes programme before becoming a reporter, presenter and political correspondent. She also has a Sony Bronze award for a special report on child poverty.
Mark Damazer, Controller of Radio 4, said: "I am thrilled that Martha Kearney will be taking over from the much missed Nick Clarke as the main presenter of The World At One. She has delighted the Woman's Hour audience for several years. On Newsnight she has demonstrated outstanding political knowledge and insight – and a flair for communicating those insights to the audience."
Martha Kearney herself told us: "For me The World At One is the perfect forum for intelligent analysis and interviewing – that's largely due to the legacy of Nick Clarke whom I admired hugely. Presenting the programme will be a really exciting challenge and a genuine honour."
Martha takes up the new role from April 2007.
Colin Hancock, Editor of The World At One and The World This Weekend, said: "Martha has an incredibly strong track record as a political journalist and broadcaster – managing to be both authoritative and engaging. I'm delighted she's going to be joining us.
"It's been a very difficult year with Nick's illness and death, and particularly difficult for Shaun who's been a superb presenter for us during this period, so I'm also very pleased indeed that we're now able to appoint him as one of our two full-time presenters. Martha and Shaun will make a very formidable team."
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