Sara Cox has thanked fans for their support after she was confirmed as host of Radio 2’s new Drivetime show following the departure of Simon Mayo.
Mayo announced last week that he was quitting the station, after just a few months co-presenting with Jo Whiley.
Cox wrote on Twitter: “So many lovely messages. Thank you! *cartwheels down the stairs to feed the dogs*”.
And she added: “Can’t wait to start my dream job. I solemnly promise to play you brilliant music and make you lol-a-lot.”
Mayo was the voice of Drivetime for eight years but announced he would be leaving to focus on writing.
Whiley was brought in to co-host in May, but the move sparked a backlash from listeners and a petition to bring back the old format.
Mayo defended Whiley when he announced he was quitting the BBC station, saying that “when the show was ‘reconfigured’ she was my first and only choice”.
Cox, who currently presents a 10pm to midnight show on Radio 2, became the favourite to become the new presenter of Drivetime.
She had previously been heavily tipped to take over presenting duties on Chris Evans’s Breakfast Show, but Zoe Ball landed the role.
Cox, who takes over in 2019, said: “I’ve been proud to be part of the Radio 2 family for a few years now and the opportunity to present such a big show as Drivetime – playing fantastic music and hopefully making people smile as they cook tea or head home after a day’s graft – is the icing on what is already a very brilliant cake.
“I’m beyond chuffed to be given this role and to directly quote my mum on hearing the good news, it is indeed ‘fandabbyruddydozy’.”
Whiley will be launching a new show from 7pm to 9pm, Monday to Thursday.
Radio 2 said that Cox’s new show will “build on the success of Sara’s current show, and will be jam-packed with listener interaction, brilliant music and fun-filled chat”.
Lewis Carnie, head of Radio 2, said: “Sara is hugely popular with the Radio 2 audience and I have every confidence that she’ll make the new Drivetime show her very own.”
In another shake-up to the radio schedule, Trevor Nelson will be moved from his 8pm to 10pm Saturday night slot, to present from 10pm to midnight from Monday to Thursday.
He said: “To present eight hours a week of the music I love on BBC Radio 2 is a dream come true for me.”
Nelson will also continue to present on BBC Radio 1 Xtra.