RADIO presenter Bob Brolly has admitted he is sad to leave his role at the BBC after 30 years of service with the broadcaster.
The Derry native, who lives in Coventry, has been a DJ within the BBC’s stations in the West Midlands for three decades.
He hosted his hugely popular Bob Brolly’s Irish Show for more than 25 of those years until it was taken off the airwaves when the Covid pandemic struck in 2020.
This week the presenter told The Irish Post that he had now left the BBC after refusing to “audition” to continue his employment with the broadcaster.
“My current contract with the BBC was coming to an end this month and I was told I would have to audition to keep my job,” Brolly told The Irish Post.
“I said ‘what for, for doing what I have been doing 30 years, which has brought record figures to the station?’.
“I thought it was a wind up, but I was told this is what they are doing now, and I thought no.”
Brolly shared his “anger” over the demand to "audition" with listeners during his Sunday afternoon show on August 27.
A couple of days after that broadcast his boss at the BBC informed him that it would be his last show.
“I was sad about the situation and that turned to anger, and I shared that with the listeners,” Brolly admits.
“So that was my last programme. My contract officially ended at the end of the month, but I got a call from the boss a couple of days after that show telling me I would not be on the air again.”
Brolly’s contract with the BBC formally ended on Sunday, September 24 and now none of his previous shows are available to listen to on the BBC Sounds App.
However, within days of his final show going out last month, Brolly was contacted with an opportunity to join the newly reinstated BRMB station in Birmingham.
“It’s very, very sad to have my time at the BBC end like that,” he admits.
“But within ten minutes of that show going out I had a call from someone with an opportunity with BRMB.
“The station has been closed for 10 years, but it’s back as of last month and I will be joining the station.”
Brolly will present Bob Brolly’s Irish Show on BRMB, formerly Big City Radio, from 2-4pm every Sunday from October 1.
“After 30 years at the BBC I am very sad to leave, but I am so looking forward to joining BRMB,” he said, “they are radio people, they are great people.
“So, the Bob Brolly Irish Show will be back and we are going to have a lot of fun.”
In a statement to the Irish Post, the BBC claimed it had not asked anyone to “audition” for their job, but required Brolly to undergo a recruitment process in order to renew his contract.
“We did not ask anyone to ‘audition’,” a BBC spokesperson told is.
“Last year we announced there would be changes to all local radio schedules across England, to achieve this fairly we followed our usual recruitment policies for interviewing candidates for presenter/producer roles in local radio,” they explained.
“It was entirely up to individuals whether they decided to go through that process or not and we respect their decisions either way.”
They added: “We wish Bob all the best for the future and thank him for his service to our listeners over the last three decades.”