Entertainment

Ryan Tubridy unveiled as new Virgin Radio host

Former RTE presenter Ryan Tubridy (Kevin Bakhurst/PA)
Former RTE presenter Ryan Tubridy (Kevin Bakhurst/PA) Former RTE presenter Ryan Tubridy (Kevin Bakhurst/PA)

Former RTE star Ryan Tubridy has been announced as the new host of Virgin Radio UK’s mid-morning show.

Tubridy, who was the long-time host of RTE’s flagship Late Late Show on Irish TV, left Ireland’s national broadcaster in the summer following weeks of controversy related to revelations the organisation had publicly underreported payments to him.

The news of his new job was unveiled on the Chris Evans Breakfast Show on Thursday.

The new-look mid-morning show will air from January. It will be broadcast simultaneously on Irish radio outlet Dublin’s Q102.

Tubridy will also present a dedicated Irish weekend show across the Wireless Ireland station network, covering Dublin’s Q102, Cork’s 96FM, Live 95 in Limerick and LMFM.

“I couldn’t be more excited to start this new chapter with Virgin Radio,” Tubridy said in a statement.

“New city, new station, new beginnings. I love radio and what a joy to be following the legendary Chris Evans every morning. It’s been a pleasure getting to know my new friends at Virgin Radio, all of whom have been warm, engaging and very entertaining.

“And big thanks to the London Irish who have made me feel so welcome in recent weeks. On a personal note, this is a big day for my wonderful family who I hope to make proud, and also the people who advised me so well recently and got me to this moment.

“To the listeners, wherever they might be, I urge you to join us on this adventure every weekday morning, there is much fun to be had.”

Tubridy stood down as Late Late Show host earlier this year but was continuing to present his weekday show on RTE Radio One when the furore over incorrectly disclosed payments RTE made to him erupted in the summer.

At that point negotiations over a new radio contract for Tubridy were halted and he was taken off air amid the crisis that engulfed the organisation.

RTE director-general Kevin Bakhurst later re-entered negotiations with a view to securing Tubridy’s return to the airwaves on a new contract but those talks broke down in August after the director-general claimed the presenter was not taking sufficient responsibility for his role in the payments controversy.

RTE pay revelations
RTE pay revelations Ryan Tubridy (right) with his agent Noel Kelly leaving parliament in Dublin after giving evidence to two committees on the RTE payments controversy (Niall Carson/PA)

Tubridy has insisted he was not overpaid by RTE, but rather RTE underdeclared his agreed remuneration.

Virgin Radio UK content director Mike Cass welcomed the Irish presenter to the station.

“I am beyond delighted that Ryan is joining the amazing roster of presenters on Virgin Radio UK,” he said.

“He has been the pre-eminent broadcaster in Ireland for years and Virgin Radio will bring his warmth, humour and unique charisma to the UK audience properly for the first time.

“He will be the perfect mid-morning companion and the ideal tag-partner for Chris Evans.”