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Newstalk Breakfast goes seven days as new hosts unveiled for weekend shows

New hosts Gav Reilly, Sinead Ryan, Susan Keogh and Vincent Wall will be on weekend shows.

pjimage (80) Clockwise from top left: Sinead Ryan, Susan Keogh, Gav Reilly, Vincent Wall Source: Newstalk

NEWSTALK TODAY ANNOUNCED an overhaul of its weekend schedule, with new shows and new presenters set to feature when it takes effect from this Saturday.

Its Monday-to-Friday morning show Newstalk Breakfast has been extended to seven days, with Susan Keogh taking the reins between 8am and 9am on Saturday and Sunday.

Journalist and broadcaster Sinead Ryan will have a new Saturday slot called the Home Show, covering the property market and all things in the home between 9am and 10am.

These new shows are coming into slots which previously featured highlights from the week’s Pat Kenny show. 

Taking Stock on Sunday mornings at 10am with Vincent Wall will take a look at the week’s big business stories and trends affecting the world economy.

Virgin Media News’ Gavan Reilly, formerly of TheJournal.ie, meanwhile is the new host of On the Record on Sundays from 11am.

Newstalk managing editor Patricia Monahan said the schedule changes were a move towards creating a fuller weekend package for listeners.

She told TheJournal.ie today: “We’ve been working on it for months. It’s great we can finally tell everybody.

The whole station constantly evolves, and we decided towards the end of last year that this was the time to do it… I have three young kids, I can’t sleep in on a Saturday morning. I’m up and I’m out and I want news. I think there are loads of people like me, and loads of younger people in that demographic that we’re going after.

Reilly told TheJournal.ie it was a “great privilege” to be asked to do the show, but said it would be a “juggling act” with his other role as political correspondent with Virgin Media News.

“[With this show] you get to peek behind the curtain, so instead of it being a traditional newspaper review where you sit around and wonder what’s going to happen next, you can scrutinise how it’s come to that point, what is the root cause that’s got us to that point,” he said.

He’s hosted the show on several occasions in recent months, which is broadcast at the same time as RTÉ’s Radio One Marian Finucane show on Sunday.

Reilly added: “The [latest radio figures] have shown there is an appetite for the show. The show itself has evolved quite a bit with the hosts it’s had over the years. I’m a bit reluctant to break the thing open and try to change it from the ground up.

There’s a lot that works with it. Without focusing too much on the other shows it’s going up against, there’s a lot it has in its favour in terms of its energy and some of its dynamism which you don’t have elsewhere… it’s evolution, rather than revolution. 

Keogh, meanwhile, said she was delighted to be the host of the breakfast show at the weekends.

She said: “It’s a new departure for Irish radio. At the minute, there’s no live news programming at this time of a Saturday and Sunday morning. 

I’d like to think the programme will be the radio equivalent of what you get in the weekend papers… I’m delighted. For me personally, I’ve been filling in for a lot of presenters on shows at Communicorp, and particularly in the last few months at Newstalk.
It’s a bit like getting to borrow someone’s really nice dress for an event. You’re absolutely delighted to get to borrow it, and you’ll mind it while you have it. But once that event is over you have to give it back. This gives me the chance to put my stamp on my own show. 

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Sean Murray

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