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December 1, 2021updated 30 Sep 2022 10:48am

Andrew Marr signs for The New Statesman as chief political commentator

By Dominic Ponsford

Andrew Marr has signed to The New Statesman as chief political commentator two weeks after announcing his departure from the BBC after 21 years.

Marr is a former editor of The Independent and was political editor of the BBC from 2000 to 2005. He has presented his own interview-based Sunday morning programme for the BBC since 2015.

The move comes after The New Statesman unveiled a new look in September and global expansion plans.

Editor Jason Cowley told Press Gazette: “For the first time I feel a bit like a football manager who now has a transfer budget, I can actually start to bring in some big hitters and more experience and I’m delighted to be able to do that. My mission before then was to discover young talent and nurture it.”

Marr begins his new role in February, writing a weekly column in the magazine on political affairs and contributing more generally to plans to expand and internationalise political coverage. He is also expected to write in-depth cover stories, appear on podcasts and work on some video-based coverage.

Press Gazette understands that the Statesman saw off competition from bigger titles to secure Marr on an almost exclusive basis, aside from his commitments to Global where he will be presenting his own shows for LBC and Classic FM and writing a regular column for the LBC website.

[Read more: Andrew Marr leaves BBC after 21 years to join LBC and Classic FM]

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Cowley said of Marr: “He has unrivalled contacts and experience. He is a terrific writer, as well as broadcaster, and I hope and expect his arrival as part of the team will make the New Statesman a destination for readers across the political spectrum.”

Marr said: “It’s a huge privilege to be joining one of the great titles of British political journalism, the paper of Orwell, Priestley and Ali Smith – I grew up learning how to think by reading Christopher Hitchens and other NS writers – and I’m thrilled to be there as part of my new life which includes daily political broadcasting for LBC and Global. I have been looking for partners who won’t be leaning on my shoulder as I write – and it seems I have found them.”

Marr previously said that one of the reasons he was leaving the BBC was that he is “keen to get my own voice back”.

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