Brian Dowling has been confirmed as the new host of Big Brother on Channel 5. The former Big Brother winner will take on the hosting and interviewing duties of the main Big Brother 2011 series, which will air seven days a week on Channel 5 with live shows every Friday from next month.
The announcement from Channel 5 puts an end to months of speculation over who would take over from Davina on the reality megahit series. On leaving the series last year, Davina said: "I’ve honestly never missed an episode of Big Brother. I’d watch every single night and it was quite brilliant right up to the moment it died.
“I just feel my time on it has come to an end because I said my goodbyes and emotionally let go of it that final night. It was so painful, but it’s gone. It felt like such a clean break for me.
"I made a decision after the end of the last series that I would not present it again."
With Brian Dowling taking over, Davina gave the former Big Brother winner her blessings, describing him as a "proper true fan".
Since winning Big Brother (series 2) in 2001, Brian Dowling has gone on to enjoy an extensive TV and radio career. Last year, he won the supreme accolade of being voted the country’s 'No. 1 Housemate’ in the ‘Ultimate Big Brother’ series.
Speaking about getting the hosting gig, Brian said: "I am so excited about this opportunity to host one of the most talked about shows on TV.
"It is 10 years since I won Big Brother so what better way to celebrate and mark that anniversary than to be asked to host the new series. It’s on a new channel and a fresh start for the show that has kept the nation entertained for 11 years and I am so excited, to be a part of it."
Jeff Ford, Channel 5 Director of Programmes said: "As The Ultimate Big Brother Housemate, Brian is the perfect man to be at the helm of Big Brother's new incarnation."
Gavin Henderson, Creative Director for Big Brother at Endemol UK, added: “Brian is a Big Brother superfan with huge personality and talent. Who better to bring the ultimate reality show back to our screens than the nation’s ultimate housemate.”
Emma Willis meanwhile will take charge of a new spin off, called 'Big Brother's Bit On The Side'
Big Brother starts on Channel 5 with a celebrity run in mid-August, followed by a longer series with members of the public straight after from September.