Wednesday 18 July 2018

RTE Six One news anchors 'doing things our way'

Six One news presenters Keelin Shanley and Caitriona Perry
Six One news presenters Keelin Shanley and Caitriona Perry

Sean O'Grady

Keelin Shanley and Caitriona Perry insist they are not worried about Six One ratings.

New presenters Keelin (49) and Caitriona (38) have told how varying ratings are simply the nature of TV news.

"Ratings go up and down," said Keelin. "News is way up in the winter time, then, when the clocks go back, it goes down. That's what it is with news."

Caitriona added: "When Storm Emma happened, we had almost a million tuning in."

Having taken over from longtime Six One hosts Bryan Dobson and Sharon Ni Bheolain, the pair said they have not felt under any pressure to live up to their predecessors.

"I don't think we viewed it like that. Everyone is different and we are both in the business a very long time. We do things our way," said Perry.

"Sharon and Bryan were both amazing and they did things their way. They have both been really supportive and given us lots of tips."

Keelin said they have both settled into their new roles well over the past few months and credited the behind-the-scenes crew for the smooth transition.

"It's been great. We have really enjoyed it so far.

"The best days are the busy news days when you walk in and think you're doing x, y and z and then something changes and the whole programmes snaps into being.

"We're very lucky, we slid into a very well-oiled machine. You're getting your head around new things all the time, but we have a lot of support."

Much was made of the fact that Keelin and Caitriona were the first women to front the Six One.

However, the presenters insisted the most important thing about the job is suitability, not gender.

"Traditionally, it's been a man and a woman, but the world has moved on and that sort of thing isn't relevant anymore," said Caitriona.

"It's just, 'Are you the best person for the job or not?'."

Keelin added: "Telling younger girls that it doesn't always have to be a man. That's been nice."

Read more: 'RTE isn't reinventing the wheel with female anchors' - Grainne Seoige

First RTÉ news show presented by all-female journalism team  

'If the audience was happy, we’re happy' - Keelin Shanley and Caitriona Perry react to first Six One 

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