Jonathan Ross announces his departure from BBC

Thursday January 7, 2010

After 13 years working for the corporation, chat show host Jonathan Ross has decided to leave the BBC.

The 49-year-old, one of the broadcaster's highest paid stars, has said in a statement he has decided not to renegotiate his £6 million contract when it comes to an end in July.

Jonathan, who was suspended in 2008 after controversial phone calls to Andrew Sachs, is currently host of his own Friday night talk show, a Saturday morning radio slot and a film review programme.

He has insisted that money is not his reason for deciding to leave, although it had been reported he had agreed to take a substantial pay cut.

"Although I have had a wonderful time working for the BBC and am very proud of the shows I have made there, over the last two weeks I have decided not to re-negotiate when my current contract comes to an end," he said.

"I signed my current contract with the BBC having turned down more lucrative offers from other channels…and – as I have said before – would happily have stayed there for any fee they cared to offer, but there were other considerations."

Jonathan gave a hint of what was to come on his Twitter page at 9.45 am when he wrote: "My day is turning out to be far more interesting than I had anticipated."

Photo: © BBC

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