Why did Ellie Harrison leave Countryfile? When did her final episode air?

Virgin Radio

4 Dec 2023, 14:34

Ellie Harrison

Credit: Rex / BBC

Countryfile star Ellie Harrison has officially said goodbye to the beloved BBC series after 13 years. 

Back in October, the TV presenter announced she would be stepping down from the show, and explained all in her last Countryfile Magazine column. 

Explaining her reasons at the time, Ellie wrote: “Thirteen-and-a-half years after I arrived four hours early for my first Countryfile shoot, which culminated in me commuting up Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) to deliver Matt Baker a sandwich of freshly harvested mushrooms, it has come time for me to bid you farewell.

“It has been a decision I’ve drawn out,” she revealed emotionally, “Such is the bond with the programme, and boy will I miss the geography field trips.”

However, she added: “But like all endings, I’ll take all the lessons from these days forward with me on my journey.”

Why did Ellie Harrison leave Countryfile?

Going into full detail in her magazine column, Ellie revealed she was leaving the show in order to focus on other things, such as family and running the family business. Ellie shares three children with partner. Matthew Goodman.

While she admitted there would be “many things I’ll miss” about Countryfile, she also appeared to tease new projects on the horizon.

“I’ve come to realise that I don’t need to navigate to a whole new ocean or even a new sea, but to chart a new course somewhere in these waters, raising my three wonderful children, growing our family business and following my own creative calling to produce art of my own making,” the TV star reflected.

When did Ellie Harrison’s last Countryfile episode air? 

Ellie’s very last appearance on the wholesome programme aired on Sunday 3rd December 2023, and her co-stars made sure to pay tribute during the final moments of the episode. 

Fellow presenter Anita Rani surprised Ellie with a collection of personal messages other stars of the series had sent in. 

Co-star Matt Baker shared: “Ellie, I’m sending you this message with lots of love to say how much I’m going to miss presenting Countryfile alongside you. I will never forget our first show together.”

Meanwhile, Countryfile alum and Strictly Come Dancing winner Hamza Yassin explained his “fondest memory” of working with Ellie was during his first time presenting on the popular nature series.

“‘I was super nervous and you put me straight at ease,” he said. “Ever since that day, I’ve taken the tips that you’ve given me, so thank you so much. I’m sure this won’t be the last time we’ll see you, but good luck in the future.”

Clearly emotional about the wonderful well-wishes, Ellie said she felt "heartbroken" to leave, while Anita told her co-host she had been "amazing to work with."

Countryfile airs Sundays on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.