Former professional jazz trumpet player Humphrey Lyttelton is to retire from presenting The Best of Jazz on BBC Radio 2 on March 17th.
Humphrey has been presenting the show since 1968, and now, after nearly 40 years and having played around 20,000 records, Radio 2's resident jazzman has decided to hang up his headphones for the final time. In 1993, he received a Sony Gold Award for services to broadcasting. In 2000, he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Post Office British Jazz Awards.
Humphrey says: "I think it's time to clear a space for some of my other ambitions. I have had a great relationship with Radio 2 and my Best Of Jazz listeners, and will perhaps pop in to make further contribution as the occasions arise. Meanwhile, 'au revoir'."
In his final show listeners will hear 10 tracks that are special to Humphrey – music that holds memories and that represents landmarks in his own life.
On his departure from the show, Lesley Douglas, Controller of Radio 2, says: "Humphrey Lyttelton is not only a giant in the world of jazz, but has also remained a giant of music broadcasting for the past 40 years.
"His listeners will miss him on Radio 2, and the world of music broadcasting will be the poorer without his weekly show. We wish him continued success in his other pursuits for many years to come – and I hope this is not the last time he will be heard on Radio 2."