DJ Ken Bruce has spoken out about his former employer, BBC Radio 2, as the station seems to be making attempts to re-brand itself.

The veteran broadcaster, 73, left his BBC radio show last year after almost three decades of presenting on the station.


Bruce has shared worries about the station attempting to gain a reputation for being “cool” though, insisting Radio 1 already fills the modern slot.

His exit prompted a sharp decline in listeners for the Beeb’s flagship station, with more than a million people no longer opting to listen, according to Metro.

Bruce has now suggested the BBC needs to have a rethink about modernising, which he argues could alienate long-term fans.

He went on to say the station should refocus its aim to listeners over the age of 35, with plenty of other stations catering for a younger audience.

Ken Bruce

Ken Bruce was voice of BBC Radio 2 for three decades

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The broadcaster, who now works for Greatest Hits Radio, said in a recent interview: “There should always be a clear division between Radio 1 and Radio 2. It’s a state of mind, not just about the music played.”

Speaking on the Beyond The Title podcast, he went on: “When you’re over 35, you’re more comfortable with yourself and don’t mind being uncool. Radio 2 thinking it’s cool is the worst thing we can do.”

Bruce enjoys a weekly audience of 3.8 million, with his strong following continuing to support him on Greatest Hits Radio.

GB News has contacted Radio 2 for a comment. A spokesperson for the station told Metro: “Radio 2, the UK’s most listened to radio station with 13.2m listeners each week, continues to target an audience aged 35+, a target that has remained unchanged for decades.

Ken Bruce

Ken Bruce now presents a Greatest Hits Radio show

PA

“Vernon Kay, who presents Radio 2’s weekday mid-morning show, remains the UK’s most listened to radio programme with 6.75m listeners each week.”

The popular star’s departure from the BBC has been the cause of controversy, with another ageism debate sparked against the broadcaster.

Bruce left the show in January 2023, stating the broadcaster had asked him to step down from his role before his contract had ended.

Bruce recently commented on his departure from the corporation, explaining the BBC didn’t publicise any news when his Radio 2 show became “the biggest on air”.

Ken Bruce

Ken Bruce left the BBC in early 2023

PA

“I didn’t want any hoo-ha, so when my show became the biggest show on radio, I didn’t want to say anything about it but I kind of thought the BBC should,” he recalled.

Speaking to the Telegraph, Bruce added: “I wasn’t expecting to be carried on a litter with people strewing palms in front of me, but I thought, surely that’s worth a mention? As far as I’m aware, it wasn’t mentioned by the BBC at all. Ever.”