Alan Jones to depart radio, Ben Fordham into 2GB brekkie

Former Publisher

Legendary broadcaster Alan Jones dropped a bombshell on his radio show this morning.

Jones confirmed he would be “retiring from radio” at the end of May, on doctors’ orders, marking the end of a 35-year career behind the microphone.

Shortly after his on-air resignation, Nine confirmed drive host Ben Fordham would replace the shock jock on 2GB, with Fordham labelling the challenge “a huge responsibility”.

Nine also confirmed it would introduce a local breakfast program to 4BC in Brisbane, saying an announcement will be “made in due course”.

“We are living in the world of Coronavirus,” said Jones on Tuesday. “The most repeated statement we hear is ‘we must listen to the experts’.

“Well, the experts are telling me in no uncertain terms, and not for the first time I might add, ‘continuing with the present workload is seriously detrimental to your health’.

“I have listened to the experts and I am taking this opportunity to indicate to my radio family that I will be retiring from radio at the end of this month.”

Jones has dominated the breakfast radio timeslot on 2GB Sydney, recording 226 survey wins.

ALSO READ: Karl Stefanovic ‘unlikely’ to replace Ben Fordham on 2GB & 4BC drive

Walkley award-winning journalist Fordham will replace Jones on 2GB breakfast.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison also called into the show to congratulate Jones on his achievements. “You’ve always done the right thing by your country,” said the PM.

Jones will continue to broadcast on Sky News and continue writing his columns for News Corp papers The Daily Telegraph and The Australian.

Nine chairman Peter Costello called Jones the outstanding broadcaster of his generation.

“Away from the microphone, Alan was warm and generous,” he said. “Many people benefited from his support.

He neither advertised nor sought recognition for it. Alan Jones will be given many accolades, and he deserves them. A great career. An outstanding contribution.”

Jones’ broadcasting career began in 1985 when he was recruited to join Radio 2UE. Three years later, he moved to the breakfast shift in 1988 and soon shot to #1.

In 2001, he moved from 2UE to 2GB driving the station to #1 Sydney, where it has remained.

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Trevor Sinclair
12 May 2020 - 5:38 pm

Surely that could not look past Mark Levy for Drive. He’s been a stalwart for the Network and been successful filling in for Ray Hadley and even more recently Wide World of Sport at 6pm would have helped those 3pm-7pm numbers which have risen.

Derick symons
12 May 2020 - 7:55 pm

surley micheal mclaren could do drive .open your ears mr malone

12 May 2020 - 8:29 pm

What about another generational change for Drive . Someone outside the box.
Merrick Watts?

Trevor G
12 May 2020 - 9:02 pm

Ben Fordham replacing Alan!!!!

It’s a good thing GFK have paused the rating due to Covid-19.

12 May 2020 - 9:47 pm

Any suggestions for 4BC Breakfast? Ch 9 News in Brisbane said there were 3 candidates. 4BC has tried this a number of times and failed. Even Alan Jones has only been fairly ordinary for them in the ratings, except in 55 and overs. The person will need to be a Queenslander(due to the famous Qld parochialism), have a fairly high profile, be media savvy and a person who will stand up to politicians etc in Queensland. Considering that, I’d say 3 candidates might be exaggerating a bit. So, again I ask, any suggestions?

12 May 2020 - 10:52 pm

Hopefully they highly consider Michael McLaren or Luke Grant who are both outstanding broadcasters

Jan Pullen
13 May 2020 - 8:42 am

We will miss your show as your knowledge and research is first class – this is the end of 2GB – they will not receive the ratings that you have given them – Chris Smith would have been a superior replacement as Ben is a “shock jock” and he swears and really does not present in a professional manner and does not have your knowledge or voice. We have always listened to2GB – have found the afternoon not to the standard of announcers as previously.
We wish you good health and more time for your part retirement and you have been an a
absolute inspiration and will continue watching you on TV. Thanking You.

Frizza Fan
13 May 2020 - 10:38 am

Bella frizza is the obvious choice to fill Fordhams shift

13 May 2020 - 12:44 pm

Surely Chris Smith is the right choice for drive??

13 May 2020 - 6:12 pm

Mark Levy is the next up and coming personality to fill the drive time show. Perfect time slot for his style of broadcasting. He knows his stuff and not scared to voice his opinion. Will be a good blend of serious and humour.

13 May 2020 - 7:37 pm

Suggestion for Brisbane breakfast…it’s a no-brainer…Clive Palmer.

John Hargrave
13 May 2020 - 8:30 pm

Michael McLaren – maybe more suited to Nights, but I worry that Ben Fordham will not have the punch of Alan. I would have gone with:
Breakfast:Ray Hadley Mornings: George Moore Afternoons: Chris Smith Drive Fordham

14 May 2020 - 1:40 pm

While Ben may work on drive, he doesn’t have the skill or experience to hold a breakfast audience, or the gravitas needed for that shift.
The only winners will be the ABC by default, and I can see some of Jone’s people who disagreed with his views, but liked his intellect, going to Radio National.

Jan Brown
14 May 2020 - 2:25 pm

To Michael who posted a comment here:

Did the Channel 9 News report about 4BC Breakfast mention names to the named three contenders?


Heather Bennett
15 May 2020 - 2:20 pm

Chris Smith for Drive and George and Paul back on weekends

15 May 2020 - 9:57 pm

In answer to Jan Brown

No, Ch 9 didn’t mention any names.

15 May 2020 - 11:51 pm

Congrats to Ben for his announcement in becoming breakfast announcer. In my opinion and you may agree or disagree you would move Michael McLaren to Drive and have Luke Grant move to Weekday Overnights or John Stanley to Drive, and move Michael McLaren to Nights and Luke Grant move to Weekday Overnights.
Just a thought

Bruce Walton
21 May 2020 - 12:48 pm

Good bye 2GB Breakfast Radio for our Family and many friends families to.
If you had kept the rignt person to replace our dear Friend Alan Jones with Mr Chris Smith we would have stayed.
We come back for Ray Hadley.
Bring Mr Jason Morrison back he was great to listen to.

1 Jun 2020 - 7:47 am

Michael McLaren is smart and personable. The top 2GB commentator at the moment. Eventually will be a top rating breakfast host. Luke Grant is no. 2 also for his personable and engaging style. Mark Levy to me is a clone and understudy of Ray Hadley. Continuous call team is his forte. Will end up back there I think. Drive will be interim job for Mark Levy for mine. Ray Hadley to my mind these days appeals to “yobo radio”. Those yobos out there. The same for Mark Levy. Too much vulgarity and small talk to fill in the Ray Hadley show these days and no callers go to air anymore. Except traffic reports and congrats to family members on birthdays etc.


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