Emily Maitlis to head up all-female Newsnight presenting team

Kirsty Wark has been handed an 'enhanced' role with Emma Barnett also joining the programme

CAMBRIDGE, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 05:  Emily Maitlis addresses students at the Cambridge Union Society on October 5, 2015 in Cambridge, England.  (Photo by Chris Williamson/Getty Images)

Emily Maitlis is the new lead presenter on BBC2’s news and current affairs programme Newsnight, following the departure of Evan Davis.

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Maitlis, who made headlines herself last week with an exasperated eye-roll during a Brexit interview, will head-up an all-female lineup, including Kirsty Wark, who will take on an “enhanced role” after 20 years as a presenter on the show.

The pair will be joined by Radio 5 Live’s Emma Barnett, who will continue to host her breakfast show.

The news of the all-female team follows Fiona Bruce’s appointment as the chair of Question Time, succeeding David Dimbleby.

Maitlis said: “I am delighted to be moving into this role at a time when Newsnight feels so pivotal to our understanding of this extraordinary moment in British history, and to be working with such an exceptional team.”

Esmé Wren, the programme’s editor, added: “This is a tremendous presenter line-up that sends out a clear signal about the programme’s growing ambition.

“All three presenters bring substantial political clout and a wealth of expertise across a broad range of subjects.”

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Davis left the show last year to host PM on BBC Radio 4, taking over from former lead presenter Eddie Mair.