Question Time: Praise for Fiona Bruce after her first edition

Fiona Bruce with James Cleverly, Emily Thornberry and NIsh Kumar

Viewers have reacted warmly to Fiona Bruce’s first edition of Question Time.

Thursday evening’s episode was the first to be broadcast since David Dimbleby’s departure last month.

“It’s lovely to be here,” Bruce told the audience in Islington in North London as the show began.

Brexit dominated more than half the programme, with the safety of London’s streets among the other issues raised by the audience after the stabbing of Jayden Moodie.

The panel for Bruce’s first programme includes Conservative MP James Cleverly, shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry for Labour, Jo Swinson from the Liberal Democrats, journalist Melanie Phillips and comedian Nish Kumar, who hosts satirical news show The Mash Report.

Jonathan Ross was among the first to praise Bruce’s hosting, tweeting that she was doing an “amazing job”.

Politicians also voiced their support, with former energy secretary Ed Davey describing Bruce as a “breath of fresh air”.

Viewers and fellow journalists also welcomed her first edition, complimenting her robust challenging of the panel.

Dimbleby stepped down last month after 25 years fronting the political show.

He received a standing ovation from the audience during his last episode, which was broadcast on 13 December.

“There is nothing like [Question Time] on TV,” Bruce told The Telegraph ahead of her first edition, which was broadcast on BBC One.

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Media captionDavid Dimbleby leaves Question Time with standing ovation

She added: “I have not felt this nervous in a long time, but I know that if I am nervous, that isn’t helpful. If people think you are nervous that isn’t a comfortable watch.”

Bruce currently hosts BBC One’s Six and Ten news bulletins as well as the Antiques Roadshow. She has also previously presented Crimewatch and Panorama.

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