Media Lifeline: Neil Fox

From filling in for Tarrant to lording it over London with his Magic breakfast show, revenge is sweet for Foxy.

October 2001: Having been at Capital since 1987, and having built a career as one of the station's most popular DJs via the Sunday afternoon chart show, hit40uk, and various evening and afternoon slots (including drivetime), Neil Fox (aka Dr Fox, then Foxy) tries to broaden his career options when he becomes a judge on the TV show Pop Idol.

March 2005: He's back at his day job and when the Capital breakfast show host, Chris Tarrant, goes part-time, Fox fills in. When Johnny Vaughan is made Tarrant's successor in 2003, Fox says he's considering his position, but stays in his drivetime show for 18 months.

May 2006: But when he does jump ship, he joins a station, Magic 105.4, very much on the up. It proves difficult early on for Fox, now hosting the station's breakfast show, to overtake Vaughan at Capital or even Jamie Theakston's rival breakfast show on Heart - but Rajar figures for the first quarter of 2006 show that Magic is now London's most listened-to station for the first time in its history.

October 2007: But it doesn't take long for Fox to work his "magic" - and in the Rajar figures for the third quarter of 2007, his breakfast show is the capital's most popular. How sweet is it to prove his ex-employers wrong? "I shed a tear when I heard," Fox confesses.

July 2008: Capital had hit back by hiring Denise van Outen (formerly Vaughan's partner in crime and flirting foil on Channel 4's The Big Breakfast) as the breakfast show co-host. So it's another sweet result for Fox as audience figures for the second quarter of 2008 reveal he has retained top dog status in the battle of London's breakfast shows. "I couldn't be more chuffed," he purrs.

Fast forward ...

January 2009: Having completed a strategic review of its GCap acquisition, Global Radio management decides that a radical shake-up is required at Capital. After chopping Vaughan and van Outen, they prepare to unveil a new star signing on the breakfast show, subject to the most lucrative contract ever awarded in British radio. Fox is back. Is this the sweetest thing? "I'm (almost) speechless," he replies.