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Golden Girls call it a day: Betty and Beryl, the radio presenters with a combined age of 176, wave goodbye to their fans after final Christmas Day showBeryl Renwick, 86, and Betty Smith,
91, scooped a prestigious Sony Radio Award for their show on BBC HumbersideBut after six years the firm friends have decided to hang up their mikes
11:11 GMT, 25 December 2012
They don't think much of David Beckham, Lady Gaga and don't get them started on the Rolling Stones.
But for the past six years two pensioners from Hull have become household
names thanks to their popular, no nonsense and heartwarming radio show.
Now Beryl Renwick, 86, and Betty Smith,
91, who with a combined age of 176 were a surprise hit at this year's prestigious Sony Radio Awards, are getting ready to hang up their mikes at BBC Radio Humberside.
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The end of an era: Beryl Renwick (right), 86, and Betty Smith, 91 (left) will hang up their mikes on Christmas Day after six years broadcasting together
The ladies met at the Ritz afternoon club in Hull in 1999 after their husbands died and soon became firm friends.
Their radio show did not start until seven years later – in 2006 – when they and 15 other members of their ladies’ Tuesday Club social group went on a tour of the BBC Radio Humberside offices.
Producer David Reeves was looking for a new format for a show and was instantly charmed by the pair.
He said: ‘They were just very cheeky. They kept asking for records – first they wanted Frank Sinatra, then Queen, then classical music.
'Then they started telling me I was good looking and ruffling my hair and giving me a squeeze. They were brilliant.
Winners: David Reeve of BBC Radio Humberside celebrates his award with 'co hosts' Betty and Beryl
‘I was just interested in what older people had to say and what we could learn from them, and I thought lots of listeners would be, too. I think they thought it was a wind-up, but the second I heard their voices, I knew it would work.’
'Perfect man': The pair don't think much of 'scruffy' David Beckham, but they do have quite a thing for Michael Buble
Friends at the station told the BBC they are a 'laugh a minute' – a 'Tweedledum and
Tweedledee' pairing who often need a silencing nudge when talking about things
they should not be.
Betty (described as the 'gobby one') and Beryl (the Michael Buble fanatic) saw off established stars and much younger
rivals to win the award for best entertainment programme at the Sony
Radio Academy Awards, the Oscars of the UK industry.
The pair said they were more surprised than anyone to receive the
award ahead of a shortlist of talent including comedian Frank Skinner and BBC's Adam and Joe.
At the time, the Sony radio award judges described the show as ‘A joyous, entertaining double act, having fun with the medium and unconstrained by any ingrained ideas of what works and what doesn’t.
‘They give a voice to a sector of society unrepresented on radio, and do it with a joy that puts many of their fellow broadcasters to shame.’
They put their success down to their very different personalities, and the fact they 'never stop talking'.
Mrs Smith said: ‘And because we have lived full lives, people want to hear what we have to say. We are full of good advice.’
Mrs Renwick added: ‘We are never scared to give a straight answer. If a caller has a dilemma, we do our best to help. And we don’t get embarrassed, no matter what the subject matter is.’
While the firm friends will not be drawn on the reasons for their retirement, would they rule out a return to the airwaves, perhaps when Mrs Smith reaches 100
'I'll make it, don't you worry' comes the reply.
.VIDEO. Award winning Betty and Beryl explain their popularity
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