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Friday, November 12, 1999 Published at 16:31 GMT


Bruce takes Crimewatch job

Fiona Bruce and Nick Ross promoting The Search last month

Fiona Bruce is to become the new presenter of the BBC's Crimewatch UK programme, filling the post left vacant by the late Jill Dando.

The 35-year-old journalist will join Nick Ross on the BBC One show on 25 January, but will continue to work on the News At Six, as well as BBC Two's The Antiques Show.

She said: "It is a great privilege to join Crimewatch UK. It is a unique programme which has a powerful impact on people's lives.

"It's very impressive that one in every three stories featured leads to an arrest."

Last month Ms Bruce worked with Nick Ross on a BBC One special, The Search, which aimed to reunite families and friends.

[ image: Jill Dando: Her murder remains unsolved]
Jill Dando: Her murder remains unsolved
"I really enjoyed working with Nick and the team and am looking forward to this new challenge," she said.

Jill Dando was shot dead on her doorstep in Fulham, west London, on 26 April. Her murder remains unsolved. Nick Ross has hosted Crimewatch alone since then.

BBC One controller Peter Salmon said producers had "thought long and hard" about who would replace her.

Ms Bruce said: "No-one could replace Jill Dando - that would be impossible. The speculation and comparisons must be so distressing for her family. I will endeavour to bring my own journalistic style and personality to Crimewatch UK."

Jill Dando's family welcomed the appointment. In a joint statement with her fiance, Alan Farthing, they said: "Jill made her own unique contribution to Crimewatch UK and she will never be forgotten, but we cannot turn back the clock.

"We hope Fiona Bruce will be allowed to make her individual mark in the fight against crime, and wish her every success on the programme in the future."

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