Saturday 23 September 2017

RTE refuse to comment on Derek Mooney's rumoured exit

Controversy: RTE presenter Derek Mooney.
Controversy: RTE presenter Derek Mooney.
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

RTE have denied that Derek Mooney will leave his RTE Radio One show, Mooney, before the end of the year but have said they "cannot comment on next year".

A spokesperson for RTE radio said, "We are not making any changes to radio between now and the end of the year, and I can't comment on next year."

Mooney (47) has been presenting his afternoon show on the station since 1995.  It was originally entitled Mooney Goes Wild, but the titled changed to simply 'Mooney' in 2006.

Next year will mark his twentieth anniversary and reports suggest the popular broadcaster will bow out of his role on the airwaves in the coming months.

It is believed he will concentrate instead on wildlife shows for both radio and television.

If he does choose to leave, he will do so on a high as his show garners an average daily listenership of 219,000. 

His rumoured departure from the show will come as a blow to Montrose bosses as he commands an average daily listenership of 219,000, although in the latest JNLR figures this was down 5,000 on 2013.

Mooney was RTE’s seventh highest paid presenter in 2011 on €220,000 a year.

Working in RTE for over 20 years, he made his first appearance on kid's show Anything Goes in 1985 and rose to prominence fronting nature programmes on both RTE and BBC which led to wildlife show, Mooney Goes Wild on Sunday mornings.

Other TV credits include You're A Star, Fame: The Musical, lottery show Winning Streak and The Genealogy Roadshow.

Earlier this year a complaint was upheld by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland against The Mooney Show, following a discussion on civil partnership on the show. 

Mooney was found to have breached “objectivity and impartiality” by hosting a discussion with former RTÉ news reader Michael Murphy and Tiernan Brady from the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network but not featuring an opposing voice to same-sex marriage.

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