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Ryan Tubridy says ‘it makes sense’ as he reveals decision to quit Late Late Show

The RTÉ star spent 14 years at the helm of the iconic talk show.

Maeve McTaggartSunday World

Ryan Tubridy (49) is set to step down as the host of The Late Late Show, it has been revealed.

The RTÉ star spent 14 years at the helm of the iconic talk show.

He admits he will “especially miss” hosting the Toy Show each Christmas, but will remain on radio.

His final show will be Friday May 26 – the last show of the current series.

RTÉ have not yet decided on who will replace Tubridy, though show bosses have confirmed an announcement will be made later in the summer.

Speaking to fellow RTÉ star Claire Byrne this morning, he revealed his final stint on the programme will be just days before his 50th birthday.

Listeners texted in to ask the presenter if he would consider staying on to host The Toy Show, and his answer was “absolutely no.”

When pressed on the ‘why’ of his departure from the Late Late Show, he added: "I could give you 50 reasons about why I’m leaving the Late Late Show.”

Instead of going into detail, he simply admitted: “You know when you know and I know in my heart it’s time.”

On the programme, show host Claire attempted to rule herself out from the running for Tubridy’s replacement, telling her guest: “Let’s not go there.”

Byrne stepped back from RTÉ primetime television duties last May, with her show Claire Byrne Live being replaced in the same slot by Katie Hannon.

Speaking after the announcement, Tubridy (50) said “it makes sense to go now”.

He said he made the decision after late night walks and “talks with myself”.

Confirming he will remain presenting his daily morning radio programme on RTE One, he said: "I adore the TV show but I am not ready to leave the radio by any means.”

In a statement this morning, Tubridy said: "It has been a privilege to host the national institution that is the Late Late Show for the last fourteen years.

"I want to thank the tremendous teams of producers, researchers, crew and executives who have done the hard work to keep the show on the road over the years. Many have become dear friends.

“Also, to the viewers, I am so grateful for the loyalty you have shown to the Late Late Show, week in, week out.

"Not only did you raise 30 million euros for Irish charities including over 15 million euros for children's charities all over the island that are particularly close to my heart, but you showed incredible generosity of spirit for which I am profoundly grateful.

"I was often touched by the kind comments of viewers stopping me on the street or at the supermarket on a Saturday to say 'thank you' or 'well done' for highlighting an issue that affected them or their families on the previous night's show.

"Go raibh maith agaibh. And finally, to my family who stood by me every day of every week, year in, year out. To my daughters especially, they put up with so much and I am as grateful to them as I am awestruck by them."

RTÉ Director-General Dee Forbes said the RTÉ star “had big shoes to fill” when he took over as host of The Late Show show from Pat Kenny over a decade ago.

Ryan “made the show his own,” she said, describing the radio host as “a privilege” to work with.

His departure from the talk show also means he will be replaced as presenter of the iconic Toy Show.

“I will especially miss the annual chaos of The Toy Show,” Tubridy said.

"And while millions of viewers got to see the thousands of children who made it onto the live show, I saw lots more hopeful singers, messers, dancers and musicians at auditions throughout the country. Suffice to say, I am incredibly positive about and hopeful for the next generation and the contribution they will make to this country.

"I will continue on the radio show which I love and will talk about other projects in the future that will embrace my love of books, history and Ireland but that's for another day. For now, we have exciting plans for the remaining shows this season. Stay tuned!"

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