Yvette Fielding, officially the nation’s favourite Blue Peter presenter according to a RadioTimes.com poll, has expressed her surprise that a new presenter is being chosen via a celebrity panel.
Fielding, the presenter between 1987 and 1992, told RadioTimes.com that she was “surprised” that the judging panel is composed of “non Blue Peter people” Myleene Klass, Eamonn Holmes and teenage actor Ceallach Spellman.
“They are lovely and talented people and I have nothing against them but I would have thought Blue Peter people like John Noakes or Valerie Singleton would be good at doing something like that,” she said.
Fielding, who was 19 when she landed the job and remains the show’s youngest ever presenter, was speaking as the search for the latest – and 36th – Blue Peter presenter has been whittled down from 20,000 applicants to 10 finalists.
The shortlisted hopefuls will take part in Blue Peter – You Decide!, in which the celebrity panel of Myleene Klass, Eamonn Holmes and teenage actor Ceallach Spellman will vote off the hopefuls over five weeks until a shortlist of three is left for viewers to vote on.
Viewers can have their say online from 22 July and the winner, who will join current Blue Peter presenters Helen Skelton and Barney Harwood, will be announced on July 25
Fielding added that she cried when she heard the news that she was voted number one in the Radio Times poll, with a whopping 5,685 votes, 34% of the total.
“I couldn’t believe it when heard – I got a call from John Leslie who told me. I was thrilled.”
She added that she voted for Noakes.
In addition to her recent accolade, Fielding is talking to broadcasters in the hope of bringing back paranormal series Most Haunted after a three-year hiatus.
A BBC spokesperson said of the search for a new presenter: “This programme is about looking to the future, and we are pleased to have a judging panel made up of industry professionals who each bring something different to the show – Eamonn has a wealth of live TV presenting experience, Myleene, as well as being a successful presenter and performer has also been part of a similar selection process on a high profile television programme, and Cel is a firm CBBC favourite who understands what our audience might be looking for in a presenter.
“Of course, the ultimate decision is with the CBBC audience – they are the fourth and most important judge!”