Anne Robinson

Anne Robinson

Anne Robinson is to return to 'Watchdog'.

Anne is the ideal host for the show, and more importantly for her it ensures her salary stays the same

The 64-year-old star - who hosted the BBC One show for eight years - will replace current co-stars Julia Bradbury and Nicky Campbell when she returns to the programme.

A BBC source said: "Anne is the ideal host for the show, and more importantly for her it ensures her salary stays the same. She did wonders when she took over in 1993, trebling its audience to 8.5million. Bosses have wanted to beef up 'Watchdog' for a while."

Although the TV network has been forced to cut the salaries of some of its biggest stars - including Graham Norton and Jonathan Ross - Anne will reportedly retain the £3million she earns presenting TV quiz show 'The Weakest Link'.

BBC One controller Jay Hunt is "thrilled" the outspoken star will be fronting the new-look show, which promises to be more hard-hitting.

She told Britain's Daily Mail newspaper: "Anne Robinson's sharp wit combined with her passion for popular journalism make her the ideal people's champion. I am thrilled she will be returning to 'Watchdog'."

This news comes just weeks after Julia was forced to step down from the show for eight weeks over an alleged £20,000 air miles fraud, after her Virgin Atlantic account apparently showed "irregularities".

Although she was eventually cleared of any wrongdoing, her sister and former agent Gina Fox is still under investigation.

A source told Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper: "The BBC has played down Bradbury's departure, saying it was entirely unrelated, but a lot of top brass were not happy about recent events."

However, Hunt says the BBC does not plan to get rid of Bradbury and Campbell altogether.

She added: "Nicky Campbell and Julia Bradbury will continue to be regular faces on BBC1. We are also in discussion with them both about future projects."

It is unknown if Anne will have a co-host when she returns to the show.

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