Jeremy Paxman will present his final Newsnight tonight as he steps down from the show after 25 years.
Paxman informed Tony Hall, the Director General, and James Harding, the Director of News and Current Affairs, of his decision last summer, but with the appointment of a new editor and following a difficult period for Newsnight, Jeremy generously agreed to stay to help the new team bed down.
Tony Hall, Director General of the BBC, said: “This is a particularly poignant moment for me, because I have known Jeremy and relished working with him, since the day I joined the BBC in 1973. And I am therefore better placed than most to know what a remarkable job he has done at Newsnight.
“His is a rare and dazzling talent. He has a unique ability to create moments of real discomfort for politicans and memorable delight for audiences. For that cussed brilliance and much more besides, the BBC and our audiences will always be in his debt.”
Ian Katz, Editor of Newsnight, said: “It’s been a huge privilege to work with Jeremy for the last eight months. I’m deeply grateful to him for delaying his departure to help renew the programme, and for the extraordinary support and generosity he has shown. We – and the viewers – will miss him greatly, but he leaves the show in good health and a formidable new team in place.”
Newsnight is live on BBC Two and BBC Two HD from 10.30pm this evening.