‘Brilliant’ BBC Radio Newcastle presenter Lisa Shaw dies aged 44 after short illness

A ‘brilliant’ BBC radio presenter has died in hospital aged 44 after a short illness, the outlet said on Sunday.

Lisa Shaw’s family said her death had left ‘a Lisa-shaped hole in our lives that will never be filled.’  

Shaw broadcast every weekday on BBC Radio Newcastle, with her final show airing on May 7. The station’s Acting Executive Editor Rik Martin described Shaw as a ‘brilliant presenter’.

‘Everyone at the station is devastated and thinking about Lisa’s lovely family,’ Martin said.

‘She was a trusted colleague, a brilliant presenter, a wonderful friend, and a loving wife and mum. She loved being on the radio and was loved by our audiences. We’ve lost someone special who meant a great deal to a great many people.’ 

Chris Burns, the head of BBC Local Radio also paid tribute to ‘talented’ Shaw, who he said ‘had already achieved a lot and would have achieved much more. 

‘She hosted a special programme at Easter broadcast on all 39 of our local stations in England, a fact that reflects the regard she was held in. My thoughts are with Lisa’s family, friends, and colleagues at this terrible time.’ 

Shaw joined BBC Radio Newcastle in 2016 after working in popular stations in the north-east of England including Metro Radio and Heart. 

A 'brilliant' BBC radio presenter has died aged 44 after a short illness, the outlet said on Sunday. Lisa Shaw was described as a 'wonderful wife and mum' by Rik Martin, Acting Executive Editor at BBC Radio Newcastle

A 'brilliant' BBC radio presenter has died aged 44 after a short illness, the outlet said on Sunday. Lisa Shaw was described as a 'wonderful wife and mum' by Rik Martin, Acting Executive Editor at BBC Radio Newcastle

A ‘brilliant’ BBC radio presenter has died aged 44 after a short illness, the outlet said on Sunday. Lisa Shaw was described as a ‘wonderful wife and mum’ by Rik Martin, Acting Executive Editor at BBC Radio Newcastle

A statement from Ms Shaw’s family, issued by the BBC, said she had ‘touch and enriched so many people’s lives, and made them better just by being in it.’  

‘We are all completely heartbroken, in disbelief, numb, and saddened, that there is a Lisa-shaped hole in our lives that will never, ever be filled,’ they said.

‘We are so grateful for the time that we have had with her, and there are so many happy memories that we will hold dear for the rest of our lives.

‘She was the best wife and mammy, sister, daughter, aunty, friend and colleague that anyone could hope for,’ the statement read.

‘She loved connecting every day with the wonderful people of the North East, and it gives us great comfort to know how many lives she was an integral part of every single day.

‘We’d like to thank everyone for the overwhelming love and support we have received at such a difficult time, reinforcing how deeply cherished she was by so many people. We will love and miss her, always.’  

Born in County Durham, Shaw studied at Bournemouth University before embarking on her career in radio. 

As well as Metro Radio and Heart, Shaw had also worked with Century Radio and Real Radio, where she won the Sony Gold Award for breakfast show of the year.  

Shaw broadcasted every weekday on BBC Radio Newcastle and was described as a 'brilliant presenter' by the station's Acting Executive Editor Rik Martin

Shaw broadcasted every weekday on BBC Radio Newcastle and was described as a 'brilliant presenter' by the station's Acting Executive Editor Rik Martin

Shaw broadcasted every weekday on BBC Radio Newcastle and was described as a ‘brilliant presenter’ by the station’s Acting Executive Editor Rik Martin

Chris Middleton, a BBC Radio Newscastle also paid tribute to Shaw as an ‘excellent presenter’ and a ‘lovely person,’ saying the news of her death was ‘the hardest bulletin I’ve ever had to read.’

‘Listening to and reading all the tributes coming in for Lisa makes you realise how much local radio touches people’s lives. Even those that have never met Lisa feel like they have lost a close friend, because they have,’ Middleton wrote on Twitter.

He said the story announcing Shaw’s death was the most-read article on the BBC News website at Sunday lunchtime, adding ‘it’s so incredibly heartening and yet also so sad to see how much of an impact she has had on the lives of so many.’

During her time in commercial radio, she was well known as one half of Gary and Lisa at Breakfast on the regional Century/Real/Heart stations.  

Following the news of her Shaw’s death, her long-time co-presenter Gary Phillpson tweeted lyrics to George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass.

‘Sunrise doesn’t last all morning A cloudburst doesn’t last all day. Seems my love is up and has left you with no warning. But it’s not always going To be this grey,’ the Tweet read.  

Many listeners shared their memories of listening to Shaw in the morning on social media following the announcement of her death.

‘This is so sad, 44 is no age. Always a familiar voice on Radio Newcastle – always upbeat & came across well. I met Lisa years ago (late 90s) socially, as part of a bigger group, once & she was great company off mic too. RIP Lisa. My thoughts are with her family & friends,’ a Twitter user named Neil wrote.  

‘What??? No!!!!! I am shocked! I always enjoyed listening to Lisa and can only imagine how the staff at BBC Newcastle must be feeling. Lisa along with @GaryAPhilipson were a great team on @real radio but she made the morning show her own and will be missed,’ Dave Lewarne wrote.

Listener Jo Hacksmith described Shaw as ‘the voice of @bbcnewcastle’ saying it was ‘heartbreaking to hear of her death’.

Richard Gamlin recalled once being interviewed by Shaw: ‘My wife and I were interviewed by Lisa about us both working Christmas Day for Marie Curie. It was like we had known her for years. Gentle questions flowed and she listened to our every word. A massive loss to the BBC but more so to her family.’

‘I will miss waking up on a morning listening to Lisa she used to put a smile on my face no matter what she said and when she laughed and giggled you couldn’t help but join in. Such a sad loss to the North east, all condolences go to her family and friends. RIP Lisa,’ another Twitter user wrote’. 

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