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the new hook

Chris Donoghue is moving to George Hook's slot on Newstalk

Hook is moving to an earlier slot – and there’s an entire new breakfast lineup.

CHRIS DONOGHUE, THE long-serving Newstalk Breakfast co-host, is to take over George Hook‘s evening slot at the station, it’s been confirmed.

Hook will move to a new lunchtime show between midday and 2pm – apparently shelving those on-again-off-again retirement plans for at least another year.  

Ivan Yates, who currently presents the breakfast news show at the Denis O’Brien-owned station, announced earlier this year he was planning to leave the station to go travelling with his wife.

34 Chris Donoghue Newstalk Newstalk

Announcing their new schedule for the autumn today, Newstalk confirmed that political editor Shane Coleman would take over hosting duties on weekday mornings.

He’ll be joined in the breakfast lineup by crime journalist Paul Williams, TV3 news anchor Collette Fitzpatrick and former Irish rugby star Alan Quinlan. The new show will air from 7am till 9.

Vincent Wall will stay on as host of Breakfast Business from 6.30am to 7. Pat Kenny also gets an extra hour in the schedule shakeup, and will present his mid-morning show between 9am and midday.

45 Newstalk Newstalk

Afternoons and evenings

Later in the day, Hook’s new show will debut between midday and 2pm, with Sean Moncrieff losing an hour, and broadcasting between 2pm and 4.

The Chris Donoghue-helmed show will be called Newstalk Drive, and will air between 4pm and 7. Sarah McInerney, political correspondent with The Sunday Times, will co-anchor.

According to the bumf about the new show on the station’s website, “listeners can expect an exciting and lively debate on the day’s news, with everything from business and technology to entertainment and sports on the table”.

There’ll also be some crossover with the Off the Ball sports team, with members of the panel joining Donoghue and McInerney on a regular basis from 6.30pm before beginning their own 7pm slot as normal. (Conflict within the station over the previous Off the Ball lineup wanting to move their start-time forward an hour, cutting into Hook’s time, led to that sports team resigning en masse in 2013).

Tom Dunne, who was moved to the nighttime schedule after Kenny’s arrival at the commercial station from RTÉ in 2013, will contribute to Newstalk Drive too, according to the station.

Roving reporter Henry McKean will also be making appearances in the programme. Previously, he’s been more closely associated with Moncrieff’s afternoon show.

“We’re delighted to welcome Colette, Paul, Sarah and Alan on board,” station editor-in-chief Garrett Harte said in a press release.

“They bring energy, curiosity and the dynamism to complement the great team of presenters we already have at the station.

We’re hugely excited at the entire team we have assembled, and we are particularly pleased that Colette Fitzpatrick has been able to join our breakfast team in addition to her ongoing commitments to TV3.”

Read: BAI rejects complaint that George Hook fuelled anti-Islamic hate speech >

Read: Ivan Yates is leaving Newstalk >

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