Annie Nightingale, Radio 1’s first female DJ, has died. Nightingale, 83, began appearing on Radio 1 in 1970 and went on to become the station’s longest-serving presenter and is still hailed as a pioneer in UK radio today.
The long-time radio personality and DJ Annie Nightingale, who was notably the first female host of BBC Radio 1, passed away on Thursday (January 11) after a brief illness, according to her family. Nightingale joined Radio 1 in 1970 and never left the station, setting the world record for the longest career of a female radio announcer.
The BBC paid tribute to Nightingale “a pioneer, trailblazer and an inspiration to many. Her impulse to share that enthusiasm with audiences remained undimmed after six decades of broadcasting on BBC TV and radio globally.”
Dave Clarke wrote, “RIP Annie Nightingale, along with John Peel Annie supported my music from the early days, she was always into her left-field music and did the best to champion it.”
Her devotion to a diverse array of musical styles—from acid house and grime to prog-rock and punk—earned her a reputation as a faithful music digger. Annie was always pushing electronic music and helped promote several of dance music’s most fabled names in the early stages of their careers.