Presenter Jeremy Sallis has gone public over his departure – after 20 years – from BBC Radio Cambridgeshire.
Confirming the exclusive revelation by CambsNews on Tuesday, Jeremy tweeted today that he leaves the BBC “without bitterness or regret”.
He tweeted: “It’s with a heavy heart that after 21 years at BBC Radio Cambridgeshire I’ve decided to leave the BBC.
“It’s a decision which I arrived at after much soul-searching following the announcement last year that there would be significant changes to BBC Local Radio; changes which neither inspired me nor which I felt I could support.”
He added: “Although I’m sad to leave, it’s a decision made on my own terms and one which I’m confident is right for me and my future, and I’m lucky to be able to depart without bitterness or regret—a fortunate and often rare position in this industry, and one which I appreciate.
“The relationship and trust I’ve built up with you, the listener, over the last two decades can never be underestimated; nor can the honour I feel knowing that you’ve welcomed me into your lives.”
Jeremy said: “During the darkest days of lockdown, in particular, it was a privilege to be on air and offer comfort, support and a friendly voice, and I hope that over the last two decades I’ve made a positive difference to your life and our region.
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— HoldtheFrontPage (@journalism_news) July 6, 2023
“I sincerely wish all of my BBC colleagues the very best going forward, and in turn, I’m looking forward to whatever exciting opportunities follow.”
He rounded off with a thank you to “you, dear listener; I wish you nothing but health and happiness. But for now, it’s farewell from your local boy on your local radio”.
Major changes to BBC local radio, widely condemned by MPs, councillors, and listeners, will see local programming hours severely reduced.
In the case of BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, it will mean daytime broadcasting ending at 2pm when the station will opt out to regional programming.
The BBC has defended its decision.
Referring to the changes to local radio, a BBC spokesperson told CambsNews recently: “Many of our presenters will continue to present on local radio at the end of this process in new presenter/producer roles but we appreciate change like this is really difficult and we are supporting our teams closely through this.
“Our aim is to achieve a better balance between our local online and broadcast services at a time when millions of people increasingly turn to their mobile first for news and information.
“The changes see no reduction in funding or overall staffing levels across our 39 local bases in England.”
Under the BBC local changes, it is likely that Dotty McCleod will retain her early morning slot and afternoon presenter Chris Mann will move to late mornings and lunchtimes before the station switches to regional output in the afternoon.
When changes to local BBC broadcasting were announced last year, Cambridge MP Daniel Zeichner was among those urging the corporation to re think its proposals.
“I understand the pressure that the BBC is under, but the essence of local news is that it is local, and this is a step backwards,” he said.
“Cambridge and the area surrounding is the fastest growing region in the country, with real interest in local stories.”
— Journalism.co.uk (@journalism) June 29, 2023
Like many other local radio stations, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire is struggling to hang onto its audience.
Currently it reaches around 66,000 compared to double that number six years ago.
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