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Gay Byrne says goodbye to RTE, but he's not ready to retire just yet


Gay Byrne

Gay Byrne

Gay Byrne

RTE legend Gay Byrne has vowed not to take up any more contracts with the State broadcaster.

The presenter, who turns 80 this August, also said he currently has no plans to continue work with the Montrose station, which he joined over 50 years ago.

“I don't know what I am going to do, but I don't think I will do any more contracts with RTE,” Mr Byrne said. “I will be 80 in August and that seems like a good round figure to wrap things up on and to

enjoy as much time as I have left. “But I don't know how I would feel with no outlet for my views. Retirement would not suit me,” he added.

The Howth-based star also said he would never rule out working with another broadcaster, including old pal Pat Kenny's new station – Newstalk. Byrne, who hosted the Late Late show before handing over to Kenny in 1999, has maintained his relationship with RTE over the years, including his discussion series The Meaning of Life and his music show on RTE Lyric FM.

This Sunday will mark Byrne's season finale with Lyric FM and the broadcaster has admitted that he's not sure if he will be back.

“It's my last programme for the current season because I don't want to work during the summer and every Sunday would be gone if I continued on. I am in a situation where I am undecided what I want to do.”

The chairperson of the Road Safety Authority will have plenty of time to make decisions about his future this summer and is gearing up to celebrate another milestone birthday in his long life.

But the broadcaster said that he has no plans to mark his 80th birthday on August 5 with a star-studded bash – unless a surprise party is thrown on his behalf.

He said that the greatest gift he could receive as he prepares to finally say goodbye to his 70s is to continue remaining fit and healthy.

“There are fellows half my age who look a great deal grimmer than me,” he told the Herald recently. “So if I am still able to walk or ride a bike, I'll be happy with that."

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