Bannister fails to tempt Chris Evans back to breakfast show

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The Independent Online
Chris Evans has been approached to return to BBC Radio 1, just months after he left over a row about time off. But the former breakfast show presenter and host of Channel 4's TFI Friday, turned down the offer, made last week.

Matthew Bannister, head of Radio 1, contacted Evans's producer, John Revell, to ask if the broadcaster would "consider" returning to the station.

A source close to Evans, whose antics on and off the air have spawned a growing band of critics as well as a die-hard core of fans, is reported to have said: "Matthew had not made any attempt to contact John or Chris since he left the station. Then last Thursday John took a call from him.

"He asked John if he thought Chris would be interested in coming back to the station."

A Radio 1 spokeswoman confirmed yesterday that Bannister had a casual conversation with Revell and had discussed the possibility of Evans doing the occasional weekend or bank holiday show but added there was no question of him returning to the breakfast show.

Evans walked out of his high-profile slot after Bannister refused to allow him to have Fridays off so he could concentrate on his Channel 4 series. At its height, his Radio 1 show attracted audiences of 7 million listeners a day.

He was replaced by Mark Radcliffe, who has not been able to pull in the same number of fans.