- 06 Jul 21
Annie Mac has revealed her reason for leaving Radio 1 slot is to have more time to spend time with her family.
After nearly two decades in the industry, Irish-born radio DJ Annie Mac announced in April that she would be stepping down from BBC Radio 1. In an interview with the Radio Times, Mac revealed her core reason for leaving is to have the opportunity to spend more time with her family.
"It's not sustainable," she said of her evening slot show, "I wanted to be around in the evenings as my youngest kid starts school in September – but really, lots of things have come together to make this decision feel very easy. It was definitely not spontaneous, it had been on my mind for a while."
Mac began her Radio 1 career in 2004 with her Thursday evening 'Annie Mac's Mashups' programme, before moving to Friday and Sunday night slots. Since 2015 she has hosted her flagship weeknight show covering new music.
View this post on Instagram
Annie Mac has been a notable figure both for Irish media and as a woman in a male-dominated industry. However, in her Radio Times interview she touched on the issue of tokenism. “I feel annoyed being grateful that we have a female breakfast show presenter on Radio 2 or 6 Music,” she said in regards to her replacement Clara Amfo. “We shouldn’t be grateful. It should be a given, not an anomaly.
“But I’m very encouraged at Radio 1 with the commitment they have to women. Clara getting the show that I’m leaving is the most sensible and inspired choice. It’s great, but there’s still a long way to go.”
Throughout her career, Mac has seen broadcasting begin to change as a landscape in terms of gender diversity. “I never suffered personally."
“However, I’ve seen over the years that tokenism idea of: ‘Well, as long as we’ve got Annie there, the box is ticked.’ ”
She has long been outspoken against sexism in the music industry and has supported female artists due to their talent rather than their gender. Whilst she is stepping down from her notable radio slot, Mac assures that she is not leaving forever.
She has already started working on a second novel following the success of her debut Mother Mother, published in May this year. As well as this, she will continue to host her successful podcast series Changes with Annie MacManus.
Starting out as a female producer is getting easier and easier which is amazing. But I still see and hear the snide comments about women needing help to make records. It is standard practise to work with people in music production!
— Annie Mac (@anniemacmanus) December 9, 2020
She told Radio Times, "there's something very nice about the feeling of steering your own ship."
"I love the BBC and hope at some point I can come back. It’s not walking away from radio, it’s just walking away from that slot."
"[I am] looking forward to life without radio in order to figure out what I want to do next in radio. It’s really important to have a break, not just go from one thing into the next."