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Norman Smith joined the BBC in 1986 as a local radio reporter, before moving up to parliamentary correspondent in 1993.
He is known for presenting Today and Yesterday In Parliament on BBC Radio 4 and he has been assistant political editor since 2014.
Smith announced on his social media he would be leaving the BBC, saying: “Folks…that’s it from me. Thanks for putting up with me over the years.
The BBC Press team thanked him for his contribution, saying: “We wish @BBCNormanS all the best on his last day.
“’Norman is a wonderful colleague, incredible journalist and Westminster will not be the same without him. We’ll miss him enormously.’ – @KatySearle.”
According to the Evening Express, Smith said he wanted to “go out and do things beyond politics and journalism while I still had my health and fitness”.
He said: “I kind of take the view there is only so much Covid and Brexit you can witter on about.” His salary is not known at this time.
Smith posed in a picture alongside his dog Lexi as he thanked his viewers for tuning in.
A selection of highlights from his time at the BBC were played on the Today Programme.
He said there had been so many memories, including seeing Tony Blair through the Labour government.
His final broadcast focussed on the update regarding the Coronavirus isolation period being extended to 10 days.
He said: “My plans are basically to thoroughly self indulge and go and do things I want to do.
“Spending more time with friends and family, walking with the hound… basically I’m going to do me.”
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He added: “This is great, it’s been a blast, it’s fun and it’s fantastic but really as a grown up adult I cannot spend the rest of my life standing on this balcony pontificating about politics.”
Fans have thanked him on Twitter, with one saying: “There are many top notch BBC correspondents but Norman Smith is among the very best of the best.
“Always insightful, he can untangle the most complex political story and communicate it clearly and concisely.
Another fan said: “Goodbye to Norman Smith. I will miss the friendly face, the teriffic oratory and delivery, often with wit and humour, scything through the froth of politics.
Viewers are keen to find out how much Smith was earning in his role, but his salary is not known.
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Norman Smith, BBC, Newsnight, Emily Maitlis, Political editor
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