Laura Kuenssberg to step down as BBC political editor at Easter

Watch: Laura Kuenssberg to step down as BBC political editor

Laura Kuenssberg has announced she will step down as the BBC’s political editor at Easter to take on a senior presenting and reporting role.

Kuenssberg has held the role since taking over from Nick Robinson in 2015, becoming the first woman in the position.

Her successor is yet to be announced, but bookies give the shortest odds to Vicky Young, the BBC's deputy political editor.

Kuensseberg said: “I’ve been so lucky to do the best daily reporting job in the business, with the best colleagues anyone could wish for.

"It’s been incredible to occupy the chair during a time of such huge change and to try to make sense of it for our viewers, listeners and readers online.

Read more: Laura Kuenssberg says trolls are trying to silence her

“I’ll miss the daily drama, and our wonderful team in Westminster, immensely. But after nearly seven years and what feels like decades’ worth of headlines, it’s time for the next move.”

The BBC’s director-general, Tim Davie, said: “Laura has been an outstanding BBC political editor throughout the most turbulent political times in living memory. Her incisive commentary, tough questioning and astute insight have guided our audiences through the last seven years.

“She’s a superb interviewer and engaging presenter, and I’m thrilled that we are keeping her on our screens and airwaves. I’m looking forward to her next chapter.”

The BBC’s director of news, Fran Unsworth, said: “Laura’s a born journalist and she’s done an amazing job as political editor. She’s an energetic and determined story-getter, who gets straight to the heart of the issue and knows exactly the right questions to ask.

Britain's Secretary of State for Justice David Gauke talks to Laura Kuenssberg of BBC, after Parliament rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal, in London, Britain, January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
Laura Kuenssberg, centre, is stepping down from her role as BBC political editor. (Reuters)
The BBC's Political Editor of News Laura Kuenssberg stands outside 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain November 14, 2018.    REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
Laura Kuenssberg is to take up a new role at the BBC in April. (Reuters)

“Our political coverage would have been immeasurably poorer without Laura as political editor. We’re lucky to have her.”

In a series of tweets on Monday, Kuenssberg wrote: “Huge thanks to all the viewers, listeners and readers who've shared their stories over the years.

“Your work's only ever as good as your team, and I've been SO lucky to have the very best.

“Anyway, I'm taking a break for Christmas, but there will be PLENTY of news to come over the next few weeks and while I'm still in the chair until April!”

BBC presenter Laura Kuenssberg walks at the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland on November 2, 2021. - World leaders meeting at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow will issue a multibillion-dollar pledge to end deforestation by 2030 but that date is too distant for campaigners who want action sooner to save the planet's lungs. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)
Laura Kuenssberg reporting from the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland in November. (AFP via Getty Images)

Kuenssberg has covered major events including the Brexit referendum, the government’s response to the pandemic and two general elections.

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According to the corporation’s most recent annual report, Kuenssberg earned between £260,000 and £264,999 for the role.

She previously served as the BBC’s chief political correspondent and was the first business editor of ITV News.

The BBC has not yet begun recruiting for her successor but said it planned to launch a “competitive” process.

The move comes amid changes in the BBC’s on-air staff, with Andrew Marr leaving the corporation for media company Global and Jon Sopel stepping down as North America editor after seven years in the role.

Watch: Laura Kuenssberg laughs about Boris Johnson's 'long answers'