Entertainment

Owenna Griffiths appointed Today programme editor

The journalist will begin the job in September.

Owenna Griffiths has been appointed as the new editor of BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

She will take over from Sarah Sands, who announced her decision to quit her job in January.

In October, the programme recorded its lowest number of listeners in a decade with 6.6 million average weekly listeners in the third quarter of 2019, according to audience research body Rajar.

However, more recent figures show that audience numbers are recovering, with May’s weekly listener numbers for the first quarter of the year showing the programme drew seven million people.

Ms Griffiths, who currently edits the station’s PM programme and Broadcasting House, will start the job in September.

The journalist also previously worked at the Today programme for nine years.

She said: “Perhaps rather embarrassingly, the Today programme has been a part of my life since I first started listening at university.

“I learned so much about journalism when working there as a producer and it is a huge privilege to be asked to return as editor.

“I’d like to thank Sarah Sands for handing on a programme in such good shape and look forward to getting stuck in after the summer.”

Ms Griffiths has also edited the BBC’s Newsround and World At One programmes.

Fran Unsworth, BBC director of news, said: “Owenna’s creativity, original thinking and wealth of radio experience make her the ideal choice as Today’s new editor.

“I’m confident she and the team will take our flagship programme from strength to strength.

Today programme 60th anniversary
Sarah Sands (Rick Findler/PA)

“I’d also like to thank Sarah Sands for all that she’s done over the past three-and-a-half years.

“Under her leadership, the programme expanded its coverage to explore a range of new subjects and seen guest editors from the Duke of Sussex to Greta Thunberg.”

A new editor of PM will be announced at a later date.

Mohit Bakaya, controller of BBC Radio, said: “Owenna is a brilliant editor who combines her terrific journalistic instinct with a rare creative imagination.

“At the helm of both the World At One and later PM, Owenna has thought hard about how to unlock politics for the Radio 4 audience, as well as find interesting ways to engage listeners and explore the forces that shape the world around us.

“I know she will bring the same qualities to her editorship of Today.”

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