Andrew Hayden Smith
Andrew Hayden Smith
Andrew Hayden-Smith's popularity continued and, having been a regular guest in the CBBC studio for some time, was invited to guest present the studio links in autumn 2002. He had expressed a wish for some time to have a go at presenting, and was encouraged by existing CBBC presenter Jake Humphrey to ask the bosses if he could stay on. This was agreed and Hayden-Smith moved to London to become half of the main presenting team for the afternoon slot on BBC1, a position he would continue to hold for just under four years. During that period from time to time he also presented the CBBC breakfast shows on BBC1 and BBC2 as well as the digital CBBC channel. In 2003 he also filmed his final scenes of Byker Grove, in which his character was killed off. Hayden-Smith became one of the most popular presenters on CBBC. Again his down-to-earth persona was a hit with viewers and he became close friends with several of his fellow presenters, including Angellica Bell and Adrian Dickson.
During his time on CBBC, Hayden-Smith was once gunged in the studio after a phone-in deciding which presenter should get gunged in honour of the gameshow Get Your Own Back. With 63% of the votes, Hayden-Smith had a bucket of pink gunge and a bucket of green gunge poured directly over his head.
By this time he had begun presenting the UK Top 40 on CBBC. The show had begun in early 2002 along with the CBBC digital channel and was originally presented by Adrian Dickson and Konnie Huq. It was aired on Sunday nights concurrently with the Top 40 show on Radio One. After Dickson and Huq left the show in September 2004, Hayden-Smith was approached to become the sole presenter, having stood in for Dickson at the last minute one Sunday night several months previously. At first the show continued its success, but in 2005 the format changed to become more "computerised" and this was not received well. The last show was broadcast in June 2005.
Hayden-Smith appeared in the episodes "Rise of the Cybermen", "The Age of Steel" and "Doomsday" as Jake Simmonds in the 2006 series of Doctor Who. He returned to CBBC having completed the filming, but decided that he wished to concentrate on acting. His final day of presenting was on 7 July 2006, the day before his third and final Doctor Who appearance.
On leaving CBBC and after his final Doctor Who appearance, Hayden-Smith has concentrated on his acting career. In February 2008 it was announced that he will be playing Romeo in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet in London. The production ran at the Jermyn Street Theatre from 21 April - 17 May 2008.