The DJ announced her departure back in April, explaining that she wanted to devote more time to seeing her children and working on new projects.
Delivering her final link on last night’s show, Mac began by saying that she was doing really well not crying until her dad sent her a text which floored her.
“Thank you to my mum and dad,” a teary-eyed Mac said, before recalling the early support she received from them when she first started at the station. “They live in Dublin and you couldn’t get Radio 1 down there very well back in the day. At the start of my shows they used to sit out in the drive and sit in the car and listen to my shows. And yeah, thank you so much to them.”
Mac, after giving herself a pep talk about pulling herself together, then proceeded to deliver her final link on the station, introducing DJ Rolando’s ‘Knights Of The Jaguar’, a song that Mac said “is everything I love in dance music”.
Before playing the track and turning her mic faders down one last time, Mac had a message for her listeners. “Thank you. Thank you for having me. Thank you for everything,” she said. “I’m gonna keep going. I’m gonna hopefully keep being able to bring you music in other ways, and writing – whatever else comes my way.”
“The last 17 years have been the most amazing, magical experience. And yeah, thank you so much for listening,” she added, after which, Mac, visibly emotional, leant back in her chair and wiped tears from her eyes. You can watch her final sign off below.
❤️ @anniemacmanus' final link on Radio 1 ❤️
WE LOVE YOU ANNIE! pic.twitter.com/3dad00NSN5
— BBC Radio 1 (@BBCR1) July 30, 2021
Earlier this week, ahead of last night’s final show, Mac took to Instagram to shout out the likes of Jo Whiley, Sara Cox, Annie Nightingale, Maryanne Hobbs and more women working in radio, and praised how far Radio 1 has come since she joined in 2004.
“When I joined Radio 1, the gatekeepers of mainstream music and alternative music on the radio were mostly men. It was lads lads lads!” she wrote, discussing how former Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles “generally seemed to use women (and anyone who wasn’t cis male) as props for jokes”.
She added: “It has been such a pleasure to witness all the brilliant women who have joined in the ranks of ‘specialist’ music broadcasting on Radio 1 during my tenure there,” shouting out a host of DJs and producers who have worked on the station in her time there.
“We’ve come some ways, and I know it’s obvious to say but god it’s important to say, that there’s still a way to go,” Mac added. “I love listening to women on the radio. All colours and creeds. Funny women. Nerdy women. Whip smart women.
“I would love to not be pleasantly surprised when there’s a new appointment of a solo female DJ in a high profile show. I would love to hear a mainstream radio show with two female co presenters. Broadcasting needs to keep investing in women in all of our varied glory.”
Earlier this month, Annie Mac said that women in prominent roles within the music industry “should be a given, not an anomaly”.
Mac went on to say that she was “very encouraged” by Radio 1 and “the commitment they have to women,” adding that lining up Clara Amfo as her replacement was “the most sensible and inspired choice”.