BBC Midlands Today presenter Suzanne Virdee has announced she is leaving the show after refusing to sign a five-month contract.
The Solihull-born 42-year-old is quitting the news and current affairs programme as of Friday this week.
Mrs Virdee, who joined the Midlands Today presentation team in April 2001, said she had been due to sign a five-month contract, but has decided to leave “due to circumstances beyond my control”.
“It is with great sadness that I will not be continuing my long association with Midlands Today,” she said.
“However, due to circumstances beyond my control it is not possible for me to sign a proposed five-month contract and my final day presenting Midlands Today will be Friday, March 30, 2012.”
Mrs Virdee became a journalist as a trainee reporter at the age of 18 with the Solihull Times.
After passing her journalism qualifications she worked for Central Television and went back to newspapers, taking up posts with the Sunday Mercury and the Birmingham Mail. She then moved into radio with BBC WM, before working for Central Television again.
Mrs Virdee took over as the Midlands Today main presenter in 2002 having started on late night bulletins the previous year.
“I have had many happy years co-presenting the programme and I am proud and privileged to have helped make the programme one of the most watched regional news programmes in the country,” she said.
“It’s been an honour and a privilege to bring the news to the region where I was born and brought up and I really am extremely grateful for that opportunity and the support I have had from viewers.
“Working with my dear friend and co-host Nick Owen has been a total pleasure and us being honoured with best presenter awards along the way was an unexpected highlight.
“During my time at Midlands Today I have worked with some superb colleagues, many of whom have become firm friends and have been a massive support to me.”