Page last updated at 10:43 GMT, Thursday, 4 February 2010

Sir Terry Wogan leaves breakfast show on ratings high

Sir Terry Wogan
Sir Terry returns to Radio 2 on Sundays later this month

Sir Terry Wogan left his BBC Radio 2 breakfast show on a high, matching his biggest ever audience, according to figures from industry body Rajar.

The presenter attracted 8.1 million listeners in the last three months of 2009, equalling his 2008 record, as he ended his 27-year run on the show.

His BBC rival Chris Moyles attracted 7.24m listeners to his Radio 1 show, up 200,000 on the previous three months.

Sir Terry stepped down in December. He returns to Radio 2 on 14 February.

Commanding lead

Meanwhile, the BBC's digital station 6 Music, whose presenters include Jarvis Cocker and Elbow's Guy Garvey, continued to grow in popularity, with 695,000 listeners - up 76,000, or 12%, on the same period in 2008.

Commercial radio listening rose slightly for the quarter, by 149,000, to 31.4 million. Classic FM remained the most popular station, with 5.1 million listeners.

Global's Big Top 40 has built up a commanding lead as the nation's biggest chart show., with just over two million listeners, compared with the 1.31 million who listen to BBC Radio 1's Top 40 on Sunday.

Rajar's figures showed that 46 million, or 89.6%, of the UK population aged 15 and over tuned in to the radio each week.

This figure is up from 45.5 million during the same period last year, and up almost 250,000 listeners from the previous quarter.

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