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Sara Cox

Sara Cox (1974) is a British television and radio personality and presenter. Her most prestigious role was that of presenting the breakfast show on BBC Radio One from 2000 to 2003.


Sara Cox was born in Bolton. She left school after her A-levels to pursue a career in modelling. In 1994 she won her first television show role, presenting early Girl Power show The Girlie Show. She later had stints on Channel 5 entertainment show Exclusive and Channel 4 music programme Born Sloppy. In September 1998 she landed a role as a presenter of The Big Breakfast, following in the footsteps of her friend Zoë Ball (Cox was to be a bridesmaid at Ball's wedding in 1999).

A transfer to radio came in 1999 where she joined BBC Radio 1. At first she co-hosted the Saturday lunchtime with Emma B and a Sunday health and welfare show. In December 1999 it was announced that Cox would again step into Zoë Ball's shoes - this time as presenter of the weekday breakfast show - regarded by many as the most prestigious job in British youth radio. Ball had given up the role to bring up her family.

Her breakfast show stint began in March 2000. Initially Cox's listening figures were very good. The number of listeners grew from 6.9m to 7.8m per day over the first fifteen months in the job. The tide turned however, and by August 2002 numbers had dipped back under 7m. In January 2003 she denied rumours that she was preparing to leave the BBC for a rival show, and signed a three-year contract with the public service broadcaster, tying her to the breakfast show until April 2004 and with the BBC for two years after that. In August 2003 the BBC again denied rumours, reported in the Daily Mail that she had been given 10 weeks to increase ratings, or to face replacement. However just two months later the BBC announced that Cox, whose listening figures had slipped to 6.6m, would be replaced by Chris Moyles in January 2004. Cox then presented the afternoon drivetime slot, before going on maternity leave to give birth to a baby girl Lola Anne. (see below). Before she returned to Radio 1 in early 2005, Scott Mills, the presenter who took over her slot during her maternity leave, was given the drivetime slot permanently. From March 2005 she took over the afternoon show (1pm-4pm) on Saturdays and Sundays, where she still remains. She also frequently covers for Jo Whiley weekdays 10am until 12.45.


Sara Cox set a legal precedent in June 2003 when she won £50,000 damages plus costs from People magazine after it printed photographs of her sunbathing in the nude whilst on her honeymoon in 2001. Cox, who was photographed with a telephoto lens whilst on a private island, initially complained to the Press Complaints Commission, who found on her side. The People printed an apology. However Cox was unsatisfied and sued the newspaper for a breach of her right to privacy under the Human Rights Act. The High Court found in her favour even though Britain does not explicitly have a privacy law. Consequently, legislation is widely expected to follow in order to bring a such a law onto the statue books. The case outcome was in marked contrast to that of Naomi Campbell, who was photographed leaving a Narcotics Anonymous clinic. The High Court found that the pictures were in the public interest.

Cox is married to DJ Jon Carter. She gave birth to a baby girl, Lola Anne Carter, in June 2004.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2005.

Sara Cox Facts

OccupationTV Host, Model
BirthdayDecember 13, 1974 (48)
BirthplaceBolton, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom

Selected Filmography

Dating Daisy
Rise and Shine
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story
Episode Seven
Love Hurts
The Last House on the Left
Cattle Call
Blair Witch 2: Book of Shadows
The Ringer
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