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Irish Mirror
Irish Mirror
Michelle Townsend & Cathal Ryan

Ray D'Arcy cut back on work when he saw how it was affecting his son Tom

RTE presenter Ray D'Arcy has revealed that he cut back on his work schedule after he saw the impact it was having on his 10-year-old son Tom.

The former Today FM broadcaster used to helm a Saturday night show on RTÉ One as well as hosting his own daily afternoon radio show, however, Ray realised that working six days a week was no longer suitable for his family.

He now appreciates being able to spend more quality time with his wife Jenny, teenage daughter Katie and youngest child Tom, admitting that he was never in the running to take over as host of the Late Late Show but understood Ryan Tubridy's reasons for stepping down.

READ MORE: RTE star Ray D'Arcy teases huge news about The Den's future

"I didn't consider the Late Late Show and I wasn't asked," Ray said.

"The great Gay Byrne, who I idolised, once gave an interview to our radio show where he said he regretted the time he gave to the whole thing. I didn't need to hear that. I knew. When I was doing six days a week, Tom started crying one day when I was going to work. That was the moment for me."

The Kildare broadcaster then had the moment of realisation that his current work schedule was "not sustainable".

"Now Tom and I have brilliant Saturdays together. Tom loves music and plays bass guitar so I'm living my life vicariously through him," Ray told the RTE Guide.

Ray added that he always wanted to be a dad because of his own upbringing with five sisters.

"I always thought I was going to have a huge family," he said.

"Even though it was often chaos growing up as part of a big family, I loved being part of that community. The interaction with my siblings and then interacting with their friends taught me so much. Having five sisters meant I was never awkward in the company of women because I was surrounded by them all the time."

Ray Darcy pictured with Zig, Zag Zuppy and Dustin for a special performance of The Den (Kyran O'Brien)

By becoming a father, Ray's relationship with his parents was realigned and he became even more appreciative of his dad, who died in 2017, and his mum.

He added: "It made me want to connect more with them. Tom and my father got along like a house on fire and that was beautiful to see.

"I also learned to appreciate more than ever all that my mam did for us down the years."

The broadcaster became a household name for kids all over Ireland hosting The Den in 1990 and was over the moon when the series was brought back in 2020 so that Tom could watch it.

However, the TV and radio star also admitted that he doesn't know why RTE axed it but teased it could be back on our screens soon.

He said: "[Tom] loved it and that was special for me. And now Tom, like a lot of other people, asks me 'Why didn't The Den come back for good?' and I don't have the answer.

"However, the good news is that we had a reunion recently for a global streaming service and while I can't say too much about that now, I will say, 'Watch this space'."


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