Why it's a relief all round that Drivetime is parking Simon Mayo and Jo Whiley

Simon Mayo and Jo Whiley 
Simon Mayo and Jo Whiley  Credit: Leigh Keily

‘It’s very disturbing to be actually in the news bulletin,” said Simon Mayo on yesterday evening at the top of the Radio 2 Drivetime show that he – for now – co-presents with Jo Whiley. The news had broken that morning that he will leave the station in December.

Mayo’s departure from the network marks the blessed end of a failed experiment. Back in May, when the BBC asked Mayo to budge up in his seat so that Jo Whiley could share it, almost instantly it was obvious that it was a mistake. Mayo’s warm rapport with his listeners never quite gelled with Whiley’s chilled-out musical expertise, and as the weeks went by, the atmosphere sounded as if it was tepid at best.

Amid a storm of complaints from...

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