Mark Forrest to present local radio's all-England evening show

Mark Forrest Mark Forrest: 'fantastically talented'

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Mark Forrest has been chosen to present the BBC's new local radio evening show, which will go out across the 39 local stations in England and the Channel Islands from January.

The three hour show, to be called Mark Forrest, will replace regional programmes and will feature the best stories from around the UK.

Forrest recently hosted Radio York's Breakfast Show. He has also presented talk and music shows for Classic FM, Virgin Radio, Heart London and 5 live.

He is 'fantastically talented', considers Andrew Robson, head of local radio development. 'His warm style and sharp sense of humour should make weekday evenings on BBC Local Radio a great listen.'

The decision to introduce a single evening programme was approved by the BBC Trust in May as part of Delivering Quality First plans to save £8m a year across local radio. The trust ruled against a syndicated afternoon show.

The new independently-produced programme will be exec produced by Husain Husaini, the Asian Network's former head of programmes who left the BBC earlier this year. He now co-chairs Wire Free Productions, a new independent production company, with Matthew Bannister, a former BBC director of radio.

Mark Forrest will go out between 7-10pm; there will be opt outs for breaking news and sport commentaries.

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