BBC Newsreader Anna Ford has announced her decision to retire from the corporation.
Ford, one of the BBC’s longest serving newsreaders, will present her final bulletin in April 2006.
She currently presents the One O’clock News but has been a key member of the BBC’s presentation team for nearly 20 years.
Ford, 62, told the Sunday Telegraph she wanted “to do other things while I still have the interest and energy” but would miss the BBC.
Her television career began in 1974 when she worked on the newsdesk for Granada TV. She first worked at the BBC in 1976 on the documentary series Man Alive. A year later she joined the team of Tomorrow’s World. She joined ITV News in 1978 and in 1981 she helped launch the channel’s breakfast broadcaster TV-am.
Anna rejoined the BBC in 1986 where she worked for two years on Network before joining the Six O’clock News team in 1989. Ten years later, she joined the team of the One O’clock News and has been the lunchtime bulletins main presenter ever since.
BBC Director of News Helen Boaden said: “We are very sad to be losing such a valued and well respected journalist.”
She added that Ford had discussed her decision with her, and that “Anna has many exciting plans for what she wants to do in the next stage of her life and I wish her well for the future”.