Lindsey Russell wins Blue Peter job
A 22-year-old university graduate has been chosen as the new Blue Peter host.
Lindsey Russell, from Oxford, won one of TV presenting's most coveted jobs after an online vote by CBBC viewers.
She was announced as the new host during a live episode at the CBBC festival in Leeds on Thursday.
Overcome with emotion, she told the audience: "I feel amazing. Thank you for voting for me so much."
Russell was chosen after Blue Peter - for the first time in its 55-year history - asked viewers to vote for a new presenter.
She will join current hosts Helen Skelton and Barney Harwood from the autumn.Presenter no. 36
In an interview with Look North, Russell said she would bring "lots of energy" to her new role and that she was "not afraid to look silly".
"I think I'll be like Barney and Helen's younger sister - out being a daredevil - and I'll just follow and learn from them."
- Recently completed a Drama and French degree at Bristol University
- Performed in an award-winning show at the Edinburgh Fringe
- Presented workshops for the National Youth Theatre
- Plays piano and saxophone
- Enjoys skiing and lacrosse
Around 2,700 people applied for the job as Blue Peter's 36th presenter.
From a shortlist of 10 candidates, Russell was selected as a finalist by TV presenters Myleene Klass, Eamonn Holmes and Cel Spellman in Blue Peter - You Decide!, which televised the selection process for the first time.
She beat university graduate Ben Hunte and recycling manager Freddie Ingleby after a series of challenges, including filming at the top of Blackpool Tower and making a water raft in Snowdonia.
Only people aged 16 or under could participate in the online poll, which opened on Monday.
Among CBBC's target audience of six to 12-year-olds, around 93,000 children watch the weekly show.
Channel controller Cheryl Taylor said: "CBBC are always looking for new things to excite and entertain our audience and it's brilliant that viewers have been so closely involved in choosing a new Blue Peter presenter."
The programme is produced in-house in Salford after moving from London with the rest of BBC Children's in 2011.
It first aired on 16 October 1958, presented by Christopher Trace and Leila Williams.