Thursday 27 June 2019

'I was terrified about taking Pat Kenny's job' - Prime Time's David McCullagh

Laura Larkin

Laura Larkin

Primetime host David McCullagh has revealed that he was terrified about stepping into the hotseat on the current affairs show.

He was offered the role after Pat Kenny's shock departure for Newstalk radio in 2013.

"It was terrifying," he said of the offer to join host Miriam O'Callaghan on the flagship show.

McCullagh admitted that he did not take the job straight away when Managing Editor of Primetime David Nally offered it to him.

"I was on my summer holidays looking at a long list of jobs I had to do at home when I got a call from David Nally. He wanted to meet for a cup of coffee, which was odd," he told the RTE guide.

"At the meeting he told me 'we're looking to replace Pat Kenny... with you'," he added.

The longtime political reporter said he checked with his wife before agreeing to the role.

Two years later, he has settled into his position on the current affairs programme and gets along well with his co-host.

Miriam has high praise for her colleague and said that they have a laugh on set.

"I sometimes think as we walk toward each other on the set that, like Morecambe and Wise, we should skip across the studio floor," she joked.

As an anchor of one of the best-known shows on Irish television, McCullagh said that people stop him to chat about the stories they have run.

Not everyone has followed him to the famous show however and he was once asked by someone, who was not a fan of Primetime, if he had left RTE altogether.

The presenter also touched on what harsh critics people can be online.

"People are generally nice, but maybe not as nice on social media," he said.


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