14 April 2022

Chris Mason welcomes ‘lovely messages’ after being named BBC political editor

14 April 2022

Chris Mason has said news of his promotion to BBC political editor broke while he was in a pub in Halifax without phone signal.

The 41-year-old, who will take over from Laura Kuenssberg next month, said his phone “did the can-can in the car park” once his signal returned, and has not stopped vibrating since.

Writing on Twitter, Mason thanked well-wishers for their “lovely messages” following the announcement on Wednesday.

He is taking over the prominent role after spending more than a decade as political correspondent for BBC News, reporting from Westminster across TV, radio and online.

He tweeted: “Cripes, thank you for the lovely messages. The news popped out while I was in a pub in Halifax, with no signal.

“My phone did the can-can in the car park when I came out&hasn’t stopped dancing since. The new job is an immense privilege&responsibility and I’ll give it everything.”

Former BBC political editor Nick Robinson, Sky News political editor Beth Rigby and UK editor for ITV News Paul Brand were among those who sent messages of congratulations on social media.

Laura Kuenssberg is stepping down (Dominic Lipinski/PA) (PA Wire)

Kuenssberg was last month announced as the new permanent presenter of the BBC’s Sunday morning politics show, replacing Andrew Marr.

Her final assignment as political editor will be covering the local elections in May.

According to the corporation’s most recent annual report, she earned between £260,000 and £264,999 for the role.

Mason reportedly only applied for the role this month, with Adam Fleming, co-presenter of Newscast and a long-standing friend, competing for the job.

It was previously reported that Sophy Ridge, who presents the Sky News Sunday morning politics show, and Anushka Asthana, deputy political editor of ITV News, were the frontrunners and that Mason had ruled himself out.

Originally from Yorkshire, Mason started his career as an ITN trainee before spending time as BBC Radio 5 Live’s political reporter.

He co-presented the network’s Question Time Extra Time and also spent two years in Brussels as Europe correspondent.

In recent years, he was co-host of political talkshow Brexitcast and still regularly appears on Newscast.

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