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Radio 2 announce festive shows

A special new show from radio legend Kenny Everett is the highlight of Radio 2's Christmas and New Year line-up.

Aled Jones looks after breakfast on Christmas Day and Boxing Day, while Chris Evans will host a special show from York on 23 December.

Kicking off the Christmas festivities, Evans will be hosting his Breakfast Show from around the kitchen table at the Archbishop of York's historic Bishopthorpe Palace and finding out what treats an Archbishop keeps in his fridge. Chris' Yorkshire Yuletide will also feature live music from Manic Street Preachers' James Dean Bradfield and KT Tunstall, who will be singing some Christmas classics. The York Minster choir will also be present including 12-year-old sensation, choirgirl Isabel. There will be seasonal surprises aplenty and the whole show will be streamed live on the Radio 2 website so expect lots of visual treats.

Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders make their radio presenting debut with three 2-hour shows on Boxing Day, New Year's Day and 3 January.

Kenny Everett's Christmas Selection Box will feature a wealth of archive gems, including characters such as Captain Kremmen, Gran and Rock Salmon, plus many inventive jingles sung by Kenny. A variety of music will be introduced by him, ranging from oldies by his favourite pop artists to classical melodies and we're told there will also be some recent records that Kenny would have liked for their jolliness and tunefulness. In addition Paul Gambaccini will present a documentary about Kenny's influential radio career in 'Wireless Kenny Everett'. Paul says: "Kenny Everett was the best of us. It was no surprise that the entire profession turned out for his funeral. All the radio stars of his time recognised his genius. Kenny was a master of both preparation and spontaneity. He had both wit and technical skill. He loved both music and comedy. He was the only one of us who used the studio instead of just tolerating it. He was a wonderful one-off, a great presenter and a fine friend."

Radio 2 weekend regulars Alan Carr and Paul O'Grady will be covering various shows, with Alan hosting a live 'office' party on Christmas Eve.

Kylie Minogue will be answering listeners' questions in A Line Of Enquiry, hosted by Kate Thornton. In an interview where Kylie discusses career, family and her breast cancer battle, Kylie also jokes about how different she and sister Dannii are when it comes to Christmas shopping.

Teams of Radio 2 presenters will take part in a Christmas Quiz hosted by Chris Evans that'll be broadcast by the station. The teams include Simon Mayo, Patrick Kielty and Janice Long and quiz rounds include Beat The Intro, Who Said That, Pick of the Pops, and The Organist Entertains featuring Radio 2's very own maestro Nigel Ogden.

Younger listeners are also catered for with the annual return of Ed 'Stewpot' Stewart's Junior Choice on Christmas morning. Ed is looking forward to the show: "It's the quickest two hours of the year for me – and after the show, all I have to do is decide which motorway service station I will be eating my Christmas dinner at!"

There will be a double dose of Aled Jones, who will be waking up listeners on Christmas Day and Boxing Day with seasonal specials of Good Morning Christmas and Good Morning Sunday.

Bob Shennan, Controller Radio 2 and 6 Music, says: "Radio 2 has a glittering array of stars on offer this Christmas and we're delighted such a variety of big names will be gracing our airwaves over the holiday. We hope our audience will enjoy over-indulging on this veritable feast of programmes. Our schedule features something for everyone with plenty of music, interviews, comedy and documentaries, as well as time for quiet reflection."

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