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Friday 22 June 2018

Here is the news: Bryan Dobson will sign off this evening

Presenter Bryan Dobson
Presenter Bryan Dobson

RTE stalwart Bryan Dobson will read the headlines on the Six One News for the last time tonight and not Friday, as was expected, before moving to radio show Morning Ireland.

However, RTE has yet to decide who will replace him on the Six One, which he has co-anchored since 1996, the Herald can reveal.

While he may have hit the headlines due to the €60,000-€80,000 gulf in salary between fellow presenter Sharon Ni Bheolain and himself, there's no divide between them off-air.

Drinks

He has indicated that after tonight's show, the pair may head out for a meal together and "a few drinks" with some key colleagues.

An RTE insider said: "Bryan was reluctant to make a big deal about leaving because, the way he sees it, he's only moving across the room.

"He's a very understated guy and doesn't want a big fuss made. He would be happy enough with a low-key affair."

A spokesperson said that a replacement for Dobson (57) will be announced "in the coming weeks".

"It's likely there will be a rotating schedule of news presenters filling his role for an interim period, similar to what happened on Morning Ireland when Cathal Mac Coille finished at the end of July."

Among the names linked with the role are Ray Kennedy, David McCullough and Keelin Shanley.

Dobson will take up the reins on his new presenting role with Morning Ireland on Wednesday next week.

Speaking about the forthcoming radio job, he said he was looking forward to taking on a new challenge, despite admitting that he was not a morning sort of person.

"The great thing now is that I get a change of direction but it's still in RTE so not as daunting," he said. "It's a challenge and I need it."

Retirement

Like all RTE employees aged over 55, he recently received an envelope detailing his entitlements for an early retirement package but he said that he "put it in the trash can".

While his chief role will be with Morning Ireland, he will continue to work for RTE news for special State events.

A father-of-two, Dobson started as a reporter with the station back in 1987 and is considered one of its most experienced news broadcasters.

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