After thousands of applications from DIY-loving, adventure-seeking hopefuls around the country, Lindsey Russell has finally been announced as the winner of televised contest Blue Peter You Decide! and named the 36th official Blue Peter presenter.
The 22-year-old from Oxford, who recently earned a degree from Bristol University, is the first host of the world’s longest running children’s TV show to be chosen by CBBC viewers and will begin her presenting duties in September.
Speaking about her coveted new job, Russell said, “This whole experience has been incredible and overwhelming – it’s just ridicuously amazing. I’ve been so determined throughout and I’m literally living my dream. It’s been hard to take it all in.”
After showcasing her presenting skills along with ten other hopefuls during five weeks of challenges hosted by children’s presenters Dick and Dom, Russell was one of three candidates chosen by judges Eamonn Holmes, Myleene Klass and Cel Spellman to go through to the online iVote which opened on Monday for CBBC viewers to choose their favourite.
Russell and fellow finalists Ben Hunte and Freddie Ingleby found out the results on stage with current presenters Barney Harwood and Helen Skelton during the Blue Peter broadcast from CBBC’s Live in Leeds event.
“CBBC are always looking for new things to excite and entertain our audience and it’s brilliant that viewers have been so closely involved in choosing a new Blue Peter presenter,” added CBBC controller, Cheryl Taylor. “You Decide has got everyone talking and over summer there’s plenty more on TV, mobile and the CBBC website to share with friends. Thanks to everyone who voted – we can’t wait to see how Lindsey gets on.”