Brian Matthew 'saddened' as he presents his final Sound Of The Sixties show

Radio 2 presenter Brian Matthew has said he is “saddened to leave” as he signed off as host of the long-running Sound Of The Sixties programme.

Brian, 88, has presented the staple Saturday morning show for 27 years and the BBC faced fierce criticism after it announced he would be leaving the station as a regular host in January.

The veteran disc jockey hosted a special farewell episode of the show on Saturday morning which featured a compilation of highlights from the programme’s history.

Brian’s final appearance left listeners tearful and the BBC was slammed as “shameful” for axing the fan favourite.

Earlier this year, the broadcaster revealed a new voice would take his spot as presenter after Brian suffered an “extended bout of ill health”. He later hit out at the decision and labelled their comments “balderdash” in an interview with the Daily Telegraph.

Saturday’s show closed with Billy Fury’s Last Night Was Made For Love and also featured Elvis Presley’s In The Ghetto and The Beatles’ She’s Leaving Home.

As the last track played out, Brian said: “That 1962 top five hit by Billy Fury brings me to the end of my reign as presenter of Sounds Of The Sixties and I must say I’ve enjoyed every minute of my 27 years in this chair.

“I’m saddened to leave but I’ll be back on Radio 2 in the near future with something new, so keep your eyes open for further information.”

He added: “This is your old mate Brian Matthew saying that’s your lot for this week, see you again soon.”

Listeners aired their dismay at his departure on Twitter, with James Reeve (@JamesHReeve) writing: “End of an era. Brian Matthew stands down from ‘Sounds of the Sixties’. Another bit of our lives slipping away.”

Meanwhile several fans also hit out at the BBC.

When it announced the presenter’s departure in January, the BBC said it planned to run a series of special programmes with him in the future.

More in this Section

Paul Chuckle ‘on the mend’ after battling Covid-19Paul Chuckle ‘on the mend’ after battling Covid-19

Lisa Riley warns latest Emmerdale storyline will open ‘massive can of worms’Lisa Riley warns latest Emmerdale storyline will open ‘massive can of worms’

Sony delays string of major film releases including new Ghostbusters movieSony delays string of major film releases including new Ghostbusters movie

James Corden joined by array of A-listers for special Late Late Show from homeJames Corden joined by array of A-listers for special Late Late Show from home


Lifestyle

With (hopefully) better weather on the way along with the longer evenings, gardening and nature offer a nice distraction to the news cycle.Podcast Corner: Green fingers and creature comforts

From Kaia Gerber to Oprah Winfrey, why not let a famous face choose your next read?The 4 best celebrity book clubs to virtually join

Because privacy is a privilege, not a right.8 things you’ll only know if you’re self-isolating with your parents

This week we had a lockdown birthday party, too much TV and a reminder from Joe Wicks that I’m 53Learner Dad: What I learned from week two on lockdown

More From The Irish Examiner