ITV Calendar weather forecaster Jon Mitchell to retire after 33 years

Jon Mitchell weather forecaster
Jon Mitchell has been a familiar face on screen since the 1980s. Credit: ITV News

ITV Calendar weather forecaster Jon Mitchell is to retire after more than three decades on-screen in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.

Jon, who is the longest serving weather presenter on ITV and one of the most enduring faces on British television, first appeared on our screens in 1989 as a stand-in for the then Yorkshire Television weatherman Bob Rust.

He became a regular in 1995 and estimates that in his time with Calendar he has provided around 70,000 forecasts. 

  • Jon Mitchell's first ever television appearance was when he was interviewed as a Met Office meteorologist for ITV Calendar in 1986.

Jon, who is 61, said: "It has been an absolute pleasure doing the job that I’m passionate about for so long. I’ve worked with some wonderful people and have enjoyed the friendship and good humour of the people of this marvellous region along the way.

"People often ask me what the best part of my job is. It's talking with people that I wouldn't otherwise talk to because they recognise me –  I love this because everyone has a story to tell.

"It's also being able to gaze up at the sky and class it as research. I always say to people, 'look up – it's free!'"

Jon Mitchell started his television career covering for Yorkshire Television weatherman Bob Rust. Credit: ITV News

Originally from Morecambe, Jon says he started his career in meteorology aged 10, as class weather monitor at primary school.

After school he joined the Met Office and worked at airports providing forecasts for flight crews and the RAF before gaining a post at Leeds Weather Centre, where his forecasts were used by local news outlets as well as councils and the electricity board.

'A constant in the lives of our viewers'

In his time at Calendar, as well as forecasting through countless major weather events, he has been to the top of the Emley Moor television mast, travelled on the footplate of the Flying Scotsman and spent time in the operations room at RAF Fylingdales and the control room of Ferrybridge power station.

ITV Calendar's Head of News, Mark Hayman, said: "Jon has been a constant in the lives of our viewers for many years and they greatly value his expertise as a forecaster and the humour he brings to the programme. 

"We are very sad that he has decided that it's time to leave us and all of us at ITV will miss him, but wish him a very happy retirement and the best of luck in the future."

Jon Mitchell, with some of his colleagues from the ITV Weather team. He is the longest-serving forecaster on ITV. Credit: ITV News

Manali Lukha, Head of ITV Weather, added: "Jon has been part of the ITV Weather family for 33 years. His charm and style on air will never be forgotten, he has brought such warmth on screen. 

"Jon's brilliance lies in his ability to turn the science of meteorology into a weather forecast that communicates well with the public, and with his daily chats in the studio he always manages to bring some humour and light to the end of the show."

Jon, who is married with two grown up daughters, is about to become a grandfather and says he is looking forward to spending time with his family, walking and conducting "extensive research" on some of the region’s pubs.

Jon’s last programme will be in July.

He said: "I know what I won't miss – the daily commute into Leeds and that sinking feeling when flinging back the curtains in the morning and being faced with a cloudy sky after forecasting sunshine!"