Newsnight editor who handled the Prince Andrew interview is leaving the BBC to take control of Channel 4 News

  • Esme Wren has been named the new editor at Channel 4 News
  • After three years of leading BBC Newsnight’s all-female operation, the veteran journalist will leave BBC Newsnight and be replaced by Ben De Pear at Channel 4
  • Wren was widely praised after overseeing Newsnight’s 2019 interview with Prince Andrew on his ties with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
  • It happens as Fran Unsworth, Head of News at the BBC, is replaced. 

After leaving her prestigious position at BBC Newsnight, Esme Worren has been appointed to the role of Channel 4 News editor. 

Wren, who was responsible for Newsnight’s explosive interview with Prince Andrew about his friendship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein on Newsnight, has resigned after three years to take over command of Channel 4 News, which is produced by ITN.

It comes as BBC scrambles in search of a replacement for Fran Unsworth’s position as head of news. The BBC is also facing criticism from reporters who were forced to leave their jobs.  

Wren will take over from Ben de Pear at Channel 4 News. He resigned as editor in August after close to 10 years.

Wren stated, “I am thrilled to be named editor of Channel 4 News, and lead their amazing team of presenters, reporters, and producers,”

Esme Wren has quit her role as the editor of BBC Newsnight in favour of becoming the editor of Channel 4 News (Undated BBC handout photo of Esme Wren)

Esme Worren has been promoted to the role of editor of BBC Newsnight.

Wren received widespread acclaim when she oversaw Emily Maitlis' and Newsnight's exclusive interview with the Duke of York in 2019 (pictured) about his links to Jeffrey Epstein

Wren was widely praised for her role in overseeing Emily Maitlis and Newsnight’s exclusive interview (pictured) with the Duke of York about Jeffrey Epstein.

Wren began her career in journalism at the BBC as a producer for Newsnight in 1999.

After becoming the head of specialist journalism, politics and business at Sky News, she returned to Newsnight in 2018 to be its second female editor.

Her arrival signaled the start of an all-female era on the programme. Wren was joined by Emma Barnett, KirstyWalk, and Emily Maitlis as the presenting team.

Wren was widely praised for her role in overseeing Maitlis’ exclusive interview with the Duke, which Newsnight conducted in 2019, about Jeffrey Epstein.

Andrew resigned quickly from his royal duties after the interview. He began to withdraw from public life, as the accusations against him mounted. 

Yesterday, Wren made a statement expressing her excitement about the new role and outlined her plans as the new editor at Channel 4 News.

She said that C4 has a rich history in reporting from all corners of the globe and has led some of the most important investigations of our time. 

“I look forward growing its audience across all channels and building on its strong tradition of speaking to young and underserved groups.”

Wren will have to quickly act in order to oversee her first major transition at Channel 4 News.

Channel 4 News lead presenter Jon Snow will step down next month after 32 years on the desk of the broadcaster's flagship news programme

After 32 years of service as the anchor news programme’s lead presenter at Channel 4, Jon Snow will leave the job next month.

After 32 years as the lead presenter, veteran broadcaster Jon Snow will be retiring next month. 

Louisa Compton is the Channel 4 news, current affairs, and sport head. She said that Ben left a lot of big shoes to fill, but Esme can.

Esme will play a vital role in maintaining Channel 4 News’ reputation for world-class journalism and building upon all the things that make it the best in business.

“This includes ground breaking investigations, in-depth foreign reports, first-class analysis, and a huge commitment diversity and digital – while also taking the programme further.