Anneka Rice claims BBC failed to contact her about Radio 2 replacement

Anneka Rice claims BBC failed to contact her about Radio 2 replacement

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Anneka Rice, 64, alleged she was only given two weeks notice upon finding out she was being replaced on BBC Radio 2 by Dermot O’Leary, 49. The presenter was shopping for furniture back in 2017 when her agent phoned her to give her the bad news.

Anneka claimed she was so upset about the news she was unable to leave the shop until she had calmed down and stopped crying.

The star revealed she was “disappointed” it was not someone from the BBC who got in touch with her.

She said the “worst bit” of her time with the BBC was when she lost her breakfast show on Radio 2 “with two weeks notice” having had the slot for over a decade.

Anneka went on to claim she just got a call from her agent, who explained she wasn’t doing it “from two weeks time.”

She continued: “I actually was in a sofa shop at the time, and I remember sitting in the sofa shop and just crying, I couldn’t leave, it was quite embarrassing.”

Anneka added in an interview on the Off Air With Jane and Fi podcast: “It was disappointing that nobody from the BBC contacted me.

“Then I thought that doesn’t matter because of course they’re going to give it to a younger feisty woman, and I was all up for that… and then it wasn’t, it went to Dermot O’Leary who I absolutely adore, but that was more of a shock.”

Anneka revealed that she undertook a training course at the BBC 46 years ago, as she claimed “me and Tony Blackburn must be the longest serving BBC’ers in existence.” has contacted a BBC representative for comment.

Anneka began her broadcasting career as a trainee in the 1970s, landing her first high-profile job as the jump-suited “skyrunner” on Channel 4.

She went on to appear in Strictly Come Dancing back in 2019, which she confessed left her with her health in tatters.

Despite facing numerous tasks and adventures over the years on her BBC programme Challenge Anneka, she soon found out that learning to dance and the brutal training schedule that went alongside it left the star feeling “broken and depressed”.

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She appeared on Strictly alongside professional partner Kevin Clifton, sadly being eliminated in week three of the show.

Speaking in 2021 to The Mirror about her time on the show and the injuries she left with, the star said: “I was so broken I’d limp back home… into an ice-cold bath. I think on the whole the experience is, in theory, so joyful you forget things like that.

“It’s like childbirth, you just forget… but I was in physio for three months afterwards because I had such bad whiplash.”

Despite injury and having to spend three months in physio, Anneka said that she was determined to dance through the pain because she was “so high on adrenaline”.

But off of the dancefloor, the star spent her time in the Strictly physio’s “whiplash clinic”.

“It brings you down very low because I’d never really been badly injured in my life, considering all the lunatic stunts and things I’ve done,” Anneka continued.

“I obviously wondered whether I’d ever recover. I got quite depressed.”

It seemed that Anneka was not the only individual taking part in the 2019 series of the popular dancing competition who suffered injury, as Paralympian William John Bayley and reality star Jamie Laing also got hurt.

Anneka explained: “Will, who has fused ankle bones anyway, was given a routine where he had to jump from a table, which isn’t necessarily the most sensible thing to do.”

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