Radio 4 presenter Kirsty Young says she does not get worked up by claims that TV bosses discriminate against older women.
In an exclusive interview with Radio Times, the Desert Island Discs host, 43, said she did not get her big break presenting Channel 5 news, aged 27, because she was attractive.
"I know I didn't get the job [at Channel 5] because of my looks, which are average, but because they thought I could do the job,” she said.
“The idea that you have to be young and beautiful to be on TV is boring, although when you see [former Strictly Come Dancing judge] Arlene Phillips being hoiked off, there's probably still an argument,” she added.
"It's not a drum I want to beat. I don't wake up and think I must storm the barricades, although I don't want to be told in ten years that I'm not allowed on television.”
The BBC was accused of ageism following a series of high-profile departures, including those of Phillips and Countryfile presenter Miriam O'Reilly, who won an age discrimination case against the corporation last year.
Moira Stuart, who quit BBC TV in 2007 amid claims of prejudice against older women, later landed the newsreader spot on Chris Evans’s Radio 2 breakfast show - and Young suggested radio was a safe place to be.
"I'll always be allowed on radio," she said. "I don't see why I shouldn't be doing Desert Island Discs until I'm 85."
In 2006, Young became only the fourth presenter of the Radio 4 series, replacing Sue Lawley, then aged 60, after her 18 years on the show. Desert Island Discs celebrates its 70th anniversary next month.
Read the full interview with Kirsty Young in the new issue of Radio Times and discover the most played Desert Island Discs of all time