Frank Skinner announces departure from Absolute Radio after 15 years

The broadcaster and comedian, 67, has been on Absolute Radio since 2009 and was inducted into the Radio Academy Hall of Fame in December 2015.

He has hosted the Saturday breakfast slot The Frank Skinner Show, alongside co-hosts Emily Dean and Pierre Novellie, and also hosts Frank Skinner’s Poetry Podcast, which will continue for two more series.

Skinner has been with the station for 15 years (Matt Crossick/PA)

In a pre-recorded show, he revealed he will be leaving in May and said: “My manager (called)… you know every year, about this time, we’ve just celebrated our 15th anniversary on the show, so obviously that means the new contract is coming, and every year I do self-deprecating jokes about the fact that we probably won’t get it renewed.

“Guess what?! Yeah, we didn’t! So, um, we’re not just going now, I’m not going to say bye and that’s the end we’ve got, like, several other, we’ve got some notice to serve, but um yeah, but no that was um… that’s it!’”

He added: “We had a good run but I realise that in recent times but I am ever more becoming Grandad from The Simpsons, but even so um, yes, I’m not going to pretend I took it… well I took it well in that we’ve had 15 years and Absolute have actually been very, very good to us in those 15 years but I didn’t take it well, I took it well in the way David Tennant took it well as the tenth Doctor when he started to regenerate and said: ‘I don’t want to go!’”

Paul Sylvester, Absolute Radio’s content director said: “Frank has been a huge part of the Absolute Radio story and after 15 years this is truly the end of an era.

“We are hugely grateful for the contribution he’s made to both Saturday mornings and our charity comedy nights at the London Palladium.

“We’ll share details of our future summer schedule in due course, but there’s still a few more weeks to enjoy Frank, Emily and Pierre on Saturday mornings.”

Skinner – whose real name is Christopher Graham Collins – has been touring with his acclaimed show 30 Years of Dirt, heading to Milton Keynes, Brighton, Leeds and other venues in April, with more dates in May and June at other venues.

In August the show will return to the West End for a limited three-week run, it was recently announced.

Skinner was made an MBE in the 2022 New Year Honours list, where he was recognised for his services to entertainment.

He began his live stand-up career in 1987 when he tried his hand as a comic at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

He returned to the festival to scoop one of comedy’s most prestigious prizes – the Perrier Award – four years after his first performance.

Alongside fellow comic and screenwriter David Baddiel, Skinner makes up one half of Baddiel and Skinner, the duo behind TV programmes Fantasy Football and Baddiel And Skinner Unplanned.

BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2018 – Live Show
Ian Broudie of the Lightning Seeds performs with David Baddiel and Frank Skinner during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2018 at Birmingham Genting Arena (PA)

Along with Liverpudlian rock band The Lightning Seeds, the football-fanatic pair wrote football anthem Three Lions, which was first released for the 1996 Euro tournament being held in England.

They also performed a rousing rendition of the track ahead of England’s appearance in the Euro 2020 final, with World Cup winner Sir Geoff Hurst introducing the pair to the stage.

Skinner has published a number of books, including two autobiographies and Dispatches From The Sofa: The Collected Wisdom Of Frank Skinner, which consists of a collection of his columns for The Times.

His TV work includes creating and hosting three series of Frank Skinner’s Opinionated for BBC Two, presenting multiple series of BBC One’s Room 101 and Portrait/Landscape Artist of the Year for Sky Arts.

He has also presented documentaries for the BBC on Muhammad Ali, Elvis Presley and the life of actor and musician George Formby.

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