Zeb Soanes set to host Smooth Classics at Seven on Classic FM

Zeb Soanes Classic FM

Zeb Soanes is joining Classic FM to present a much-loved evening show. - Credit: Zeb Soanes/Classic FM

A popular broadcaster, author and newsreader who grew up in Lowestoft is set to embark on "an exciting new adventure" next week.

Zeb Soanes -- famed as the voice of the iconic Shipping Forecast and familiar to British radio listeners after many years on BBC Radio 4 -- is joining Classic FM to present a much-loved evening show.

Mr Soanes will host Smooth Classics at Seven on the UK’s most popular classical music station, taking on the mantle of Classic FM’s popular evening programme, starting next Monday, July 4 at 7pm.

The high profile radio presenter attended Northfield St Nicholas infants, Harris Middle and Denes High (now Ormiston Denes Academy) schools followed by the University of East Anglia.

Zeb Soanes speaks at The GritFest - a celebration of Lowestoft's beach village. Pictures: Mick Howes

Zeb Soanes speaking previously at The GritFest - a celebration of Lowestoft's beach village. - Credit: Mick Howes

When he started his job on Radio 4, he was the station's youngest newsreader. Now the 46-year-old is looking forward to his new role.

With the evening programme set to be extended to three hours every weekday - 7pm to 10pm - Mr Soanes said: “I am delighted to be joining Classic FM in its 30th birthday year.

"Performing with orchestras has become one the great pleasures of my life in recent years and I look forward to sharing their extraordinary talents and music with listeners every evening on Smooth Classics at Seven.”

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Philip Noyce, Classic FM’s managing editor, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Zeb, one of the most reassuring and trusted voices on radio, to Classic FM as the host of Smooth Classics at Seven."

Mr Soanes, who lives in North London but visits Lowestoft regularly to catch up with family and friends, is also the author of the popular Gaspard the Fox series of bestselling children’s books.

Zeb Soanes and James Mayhew speak to Blundeston Primary School pupils.

Zeb Soanes and James Mayhew speak to Blundeston Primary School pupils about Gaspard the Fox on a previous visit to the Lowestoft-area. - Credit: Mick Howes

This Saturday, July 2, Mr Soanes will be in Bungay for the inaugural Dog-Eared Children's Book Festival - as he joins other authors and illustrators for five talks during the day, which starts at The Fisher Theatre at 10am.

In April, Mr Soanes and a team of passionate locals launched a fundraising campaign to install a statue of Benjamin Britten, as a boy, looking out over the sea that inspired his music in his birthtown of Lowestoft.

Zeb Soanes at sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley's studio

Zeb Soanes at sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley's studio in December last year as he saw the clay model of the Britten as a Boy statue for the first time. - Credit: Zeb Soanes

Visit its website to find out more about the project.