BBC Northern Ireland newsreader Donna Traynor announces departure

The presenter confirmed her departure on social media earlier today.

The mainstay anchor of BBC Newsline has had a number of absences from the programme in recent times leading to speculation with viewers about her future on the news programme.

“It is with deep sadness that, after almost 33 years, I am leaving the job that I love and resigning from BBC Northern Ireland with immediate effect. Because this is the subject of ongoing Employment Tribunal and other legal proceedings, I am not able to respond to any questions about my reasons for leaving the organisation.” – Donna Traynor, speaking on Twitter.

A BBC Northern Ireland spokesman said: “We do not comment on individual staff matters.” The BBC has been ‘cost cutting’ across nations and regional news around the UK. Where programmes had two main presenters, these have been cut down to one. This has seen several faces depart TV screens over the past year including Dominic Heale from BBC East Midlands, Stewart White from BBC East and Harry Gration from BBC Yorkshire.

TV Live notes that Donna Traynor ‘joined the BBC in 1989. She presented news bulletins on BBC Radio Ulster and was the newsreader at the station who first broke the news of the Provisional IRA ceasefire in August 1994.’ She has been one of the main faces of BBC Northern Ireland as a lead presenter since the mid-1990s. She began her broadcasting career with Irish network RTÉ.

Last year, Ms Traynor had a three-month absence from TV screens but returned at the start of 2021, Belfast Live notes, adding, The presenter said at the time she had been on sick leave following an operation at the beginning of October.

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