Judi Spiers: BBC faces fresh backlash after axing one of its longest-serving female presenters

Spiers said she was 'saddened beyond belief' at losing her job

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The BBC has come under fire after it confirmed Judi Spiers, the popular presenter of its BBC Radio Devon show, has been dropped following a 15-year stint on the station. 

Spiers, 62, has worked for the corporation since 1992 and joined the station in 2000, making her one of the BBC’s longest-serving female presenters.

But on Monday she informed shocked listeners she would be leaving the station.

“This is my last week,” she said. “But boy we’ve had some good times. We’ve had some dodgy times as well but on the whole we’ve had some good ones. We’ve had some dark times in recent days but hopefully they’ll be blown away.”

The Torquay Herald Express reports that she will be replaced by Drive Time host David FitzGerald.

Spiers told the Western Morning News she was “saddened beyond belief” at losing her seat on the show. She has accepted work with the BBC South West television news magazine Spotlight and the current affairs programme, Inside Out, according to the paper.

The news has prompted outrage from listeners, who expressed their anger on the BBC Radio Devon Facebook page.

A furious post from one Facebook user read: “Shame on you Radio Devon!! Judi is the ultimate consumate professional, why on earth would you think of axing her show? My husband and I live in Weston Super Mare and having been tuning in since holidaying in Devon ten years ago and hearing Judi's fantastic show. Needless to say we will leave when Judi does.”

Many others also threatened to boycott the show after Spiers’ departure, while a ‘Bring Back Judi’ Twitter account amassed over 200 followers in the hours after the news was announced.

A BBC spokesperson said: “It’s normal for radio stations to change their schedules from time to time; however Judi remains a popular presenter so we offered her some other radio and TV opportunities.

“We hope that she will continue to entertain audiences in the region.”

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