Who will replace Louise Minchin on BBC Breakfast and what will she do next?

Louise Minchin's replacement on BBC Breakfast has been a hot topic ever since she announced her departure

Louise Minchin
(Image credit: Massimiliano Donati/Awakening / Contributor/ Getty Images)

Louise Minchin has completed her last shift on the BBC Breakfast Show on BBC One after co-hosting the news show for the last 20 years.

The British journalist officially left the show on Wednesday 15th September 2021, marking the end of her tenure on the nation's favorite morning news show after an incredible 20 years. 

With Louise's final shift almost upon us, fans are desperate to know who will replace the veteran broadcaster following her resignation. So who might be a potential candidate for this highly coveted role?

Why is Louise Minchin leaving BBC Breakfast? 

While it’s tempting to speculate on scandalous reasons as to why she’s leaving, it looks like the answer is pretty simple—it was time.

After two decades on the iconic red couch, Louise is ready to start a new chapter of her life. “I know it’s the right thing for me to do,” she told co-presenter Dan Walker on air last week. That doesn’t mean she’s not nervous, of course.

The journalist also revealed to The Mirror, that she was struggling with the early morning starts. Louise said in the interview, “I find the early morning really difficult and another winter of the dark mornings was not what I wanted to do anymore."

“I just thought ‘I can’t face another winter’, because I’ve worked out over the last 20 years there are about six weeks in the year when I go to work and it’s light, and those are the six weeks that I find the easiest," she said.

The journalist also shared an image that revealed her typical wake-up time when presenting the show is 3.45am, and expressed excitement about having a later start to her mornings after stepping down from the role.

Who is replacing Louise Minchin on BBC Breakfast?

Louise Minchin’s replacement has yet to be announced, but a few potential candidates have been churning in the rumor mill. 

The unofficial shortlist—courtesy of BBC Breakfast's loyal fans—includes an eclectic lineup of personalities from both the home network and rival channels. 

1. Sally Nugent 

Sally Nugent

Sally Nugent

(Image credit: Getty)

Sally Nugent has been tipped as the frontrunner to replace Louise Minchin, and it's easy to see why. 

The British newsreader is no stranger to BBC Breakfast, having co-hosted the show on a freelance basis since 2011. With over ten years of experience on the red couch, the veteran broadcaster is more than qualified to take Louise's spot—and could even offer some interesting insights her predecessor may have lacked. 

Sally has been knee-deep in the sports world since 2003, working as both a sports news reporter and presenter during her time at BBC. She also earned an esteemed accolade earlier this year, winning the Royal Television Society award Scoop Of The Year for her interview with Marcus Rashford, in which he urged the UK Government to provide free school meals during the summer holidays. Now that's one hell of a CV. 

2. Ruth Langsford 

ruth langsford

Ruth Langsford could take Louise's spot on BBC Breakfast 

(Image credit: Getty)

It's also possible that the BBC will recruit talent from rival channels, like ITV's Ruth Langford. The This Morning presenter is already used to early starts, having hosted the popular breakfast talk show since 1999, and has long been a favorite face with British viewers. 

In 2006, she was joined on screen by her now-husband Eamonn Holmes. The married duo now co-hosts the show during school holidays in Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield's absence. 

While there's no denying she has the credentials to replace Louise Minchin, jumping ship from BBC to ITV may not be such a simple move. Ruth likely has contractual commitments to her job on This Morning, and might not be able to abandon her role so quickly. She also has a loyal fanbase of viewers at ITV, having appeared as a panelist regular on Loose Women since 1999. For Ruth, the decision might simply come down to—'Why fix what's not broken?' 

3. Piers Morgan 

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 25: Piers Morgan attends the 2019 British Academy Britannia Awards presented by American Airlines and Jaguar Land Rover at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 25, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for BAFTA LA)

Piers Morgan

(Image credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for BAFTA LA)

Yes, his name is on the cards. BBC could stir up controversy by hiring Piers Morgan, who left Good Morning Britain in March over allegations of bullying Meghan Markle, to replace Louise Minchin. 

Love him or hate him, the British journalist boasts a strong reputation when it comes to media experience. Having kicked off his career as a tabloid writer in London in the late 1980s, he went on to become editor of News of the World in 1994. 

Piers has since enjoyed a litany of TV gigs on both sides of the Atlantic, appearing as a judge on Britain's Got Talent and America's Got Talent and even landing his own talk shows, Piers Morgan Live and Piers Morgan's Life Stories. While there's no doubt his addition to BBC Breakfast would get people talking, we're not so sure his unapologetic approach would suit the show's slightly more refined format. 

4. Bill Turnbull 

Bill Turnbull

Bill Turnbull 

(Image credit: Getty)

Bill Turnbull's name has also been thrown in the mix of possible candidates to replace Louise Minchin. The British journalist would barely need to rehearse for the position, having worked as the main male presenter on BBC Breakfast from 2001 to 2016. 

With a whopping 15 years of experience on the morning program, it's understandable why BBC bosses would want to bring him back—especially considered he hasn't yet retired. Bill continues to work in media to this day, presenting the independently owned radio station Classic FM every Saturday and Sunday from 10am—1pm. 

 The jury’s still out on what’s to come, but one thing’s for sure—the new addition will have big shoes to fill.  

When does Louise Minchin leave BBC Breakfast?

Louise Minchin left BBC Breakfast once and for all on Wednesday 15th September, three months after she first confirmed her resignation in June. 

Despite emotions being high, Louise managed to joke around on her last day and told her co-host, Dan Walker, at the beginning of the broadcast, "Well, it's going really well so far, I walked into the building and guess what? My pass doesn't work already."

After the crew laughed at this mishap, the English presenter, received an emotional farewell from her colleagues, Naga Munchetty, Charlie Stayt, and Dan Walker, as well as the crew and audience. Her coworkers surprised her with a personalized cake, all of the crew members wearing a paper mask of her face and a live brass band to serenade her final send-off.

Louise completed her last broadcast by saying, "Thank you so much for your huge support. I think particularly over the last two years as well. It's been really tough, hasn't it, and I've felt we're all part of a story together, a shared history and it's been amazing to be here."

She then spoke to viewers and said, “Have a great day and I’ll see you somewhere on the other side.”

How old is Louise Minchin and how much did she earn on BBC Breakfast?

Louise Minchin turned 53 years old on 8th September 2021, just a week before leaving the BBC.

While co-hosting the breakfast show, the journalist enjoyed a salary of between £215,000 and £219,999. 

 What is Louise Minchin going to do next?

Louise Minchin may be resigning from BBC Breakfast, but that doesn't mean she's about to disappear off our screens altogether. She already has plans for a new project on the menopause, an issue she has spoken candidly about in the past. 

“One of the things I can tell you that I’m doing after I leave, is I’m doing a programme about menopause for World Menopause Day," she told fellow presenter Dan Walker. 

Louise is also going to take some much-needed time to herself after her departure, having worked hectic hours for over 20 years. She hopes to rediscover the passions she was forced to neglect due to her intense schedule—starting with exercise. 

"I’m planning some really long swims which I’m really looking forward to,” she said. “And getting back to running, as well, because you know I had my injury last year, I’m still going back to trying to get running, back to marathons.” 

She also revealed that she is looking forward to relaxing into normal family life and is even looking forward to the school runs. “I’ve not taken my daughters to school every single day for their schooling life, so I am looking forward to school runs," she told the Mirror.

She also revealed that like many of us she will enjoy watching a late-night drama such as Vigil or Silent Witness that she had to miss while working for the BBC.

 “And I’m really looking forward to things like those Sunday night dramas, which I’d love to be watching but haven’t been because I need to go to bed.

“So there’s a shared experience that I’m really looking forward to being able to have with them [her daughters]," concluded Louise.

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.