Dan Walker was so sleep deprived on BBC Breakfast he cried in the toilets

The star was on the morning show for many years until leaving in 2022

Watch: Dan Walker was left "crying in the toilet" at his previous job

What did you miss?

Dan Walker has admitted he was so tired when he was doing BBC Breakfast that he used to cry in the toilets.

The TV star was a fixture on the red sofa for six years but in 2022 announced that he was stepping down and went to Channel 5 to present evening news. He has now returned to breakfast, this time as a radio presenter on Classic FM.

During an appearance on ITV’s This Morning, he joked that waking up at 5.30am for the radio show was almost a lie in after his years of setting an alarm for 3am.

London, UK. 23 Jan, 2024. Pictured: Dan Walker attends The UK Gala Screening of 'All Of Us Strangers' at BFI Southbank. Credit: Justin Ng/Alamy Live News
Dan Walker was a BBC Breakfast presenter for six years. (Justin Ng/Alamy Live News)

What, how and why?

Walker opened up after host Josie Gibson remarked on him looking “refreshed”. Talking about BBC Breakfast, the star said: “By Wednesday I was like, full zombie mode. And also you get really emotional.

"By Wednesday I was like, end of the show, you are like, in the toilets just crying. Anything sets you off. Somone says something nice about your trousers and you are like, (fake cries).”

Dan Walker said he was so tired he cried on BBC Breakfast. (ITV screengrab)
Dan Walker said he was so tired he cried on BBC Breakfast. (ITV screengrab)

“So you had a cry in the toilet?” Gibson asked.

“Well, not every day,” laughed Walker. “When you are sleep deprived you get a little bit emotional.”

He said of getting up later these days: “When I was doing BBC Breakfast, you know what it’s like, if the alarm goes off at 3am, that’s far too early, that’s like a flight to Spain… but I get up now about 5.30am/5.45am, which is essentially a lie in.

“And I feel great, I feel refreshed. And I really enjoy it. If you enjoy the job you do, we are all privileged to do something that we love doing. I love talking to people, I love being on the radio and getting those messages back from people who are, whatever they are doing in the day, they are enjoying listening to that.”

<p>After 20 years on the BBC's flagship morning news programme, host Louise Minchin has announced that she will be leaving the show later this year.</p>
<p>Credit: @BBCBreakfast via Twitter / BBC</p>
Dan Walker on BBC Breakfast. (@BBCBreakfast via Twitter / BBC)

He said of taking his radio role: “You get offered various things at various points – I am busy, I have got stuff I am doing at Channel 5 at the moment… Classic FM came along and they said, ‘We’d love you to think about doing Breakfast’ and sometimes the job just feels right.

“And I thought, it’s too big an opportunity to say no as I would hate to be in a situation a few years down the line when I am listening to someone else doing it, thinking, ‘That would have been amazing to do’.”

What else did Dan Walker say on This Morning?

Walker also talked about his stint on Strictly Come Dancing, revealing he is still close to his pro partner Nadiya Bychkova. The star was on the BBC ballroom show in 2021 and he and Bychkova came fifth.

Programme Name: Strictly Come Dancing 2021 - TX: 06/11/2021 - Episode: n/a (No. n/a) - Picture Shows:  Dan Walker, Nadiya Bychkova - (C) BBC - Photographer: Guy Levy
Dan Walker and Nadiya Bychkova on Strictly. (BBC)

He told Gibson and her co-host Dermot O’Leary: “Obviously she taught me to dance, and one of things I promised Nadiya was that at some stage in her life, as she has always wanted to play golf, I’d say, 'I love golf and that’s how I relax, I’ll get you into golf,' so she is learning to play golf.”

Walker quipped that “annoyingly” the dancer was doing brilliantly. “She’ll probably be better than me in about a week!” he laughed.

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