ITV is close to pulling off an incredible coup by luring the BBC’s economics editor Robert Peston into a role as the commercial broadcaster's new political editor.
Peston, famed for his staccato delivery, has been offered the post of political editor of ITV News, with the channel’s chiefs hoping to unveil him later this week, Radio Times understands.
The vacancy at ITV News arose after Tom Bradby moved to become the new presenter of News at Ten.
A host of top TV political journalists applied for the role, including Channel 4 News host Cathy Newman, but ITV are understood to have been keen to land a big BBC name.
Talks between Peston and the channel have been going on for a number of weeks, and the presenter is expected to decide whether or not to make the move by the end of this week.
In an interview with Radio Times earlier this year, Peston said he was looking for "another big challenge", but added: "I haven't the faintest idea of what it would be."
He said: "I mean, I love the BBC. I genuinely don’t know. It is true that I sort of feel that it would be fun to do… I mean, going from print journalism to the BBC was a big change, and I sort of feel that I wouldn’t mind another big change, but I haven’t the faintest idea what it would be.
"I don’t feel under any great pressure, because I do love what I do, and I’m quite lucky that I don’t just have the economics ed job, but I have the joy of doing other things."