Louise Minchin shakes hands with her BBC Breakfast co-star Dan Walker as he walks her out of the studio on her last show.
The emotional broadcaster was shocked by his friends and family and said goodbye to the audience: “I’ll see you on the other side”.
A brass band played Lewis on a sunny London morning, and was applauded by his closest and dearest, wearing face masks.
In the crowd were Louise’s husband David and their two daughters, Scarlett, 20, and Mia, 17.
Before revealing the surprise, Dan told her: “We made sure your last BBC breakfast ended in style.”
Before her final show, Lewis said she was looking forward to spending more time with her family, after sacrificing her early evening bedtime for two decades to wake up to her 3.40 a.m. alarm. .
The broadcaster had time to reflect on his career in December, when he was sidelined for a month while recovering from an ankle operation.
It was then that he realized that he had enough of the initial starts he had made for the past two decades.
talking to Mirror, she said: “I find early mornings very difficult and another cold of dark mornings was not what I wanted to do anymore.
“I just thought, ‘I can’t face another cold’, because in the last 20 years I’ve worked, there are about six weeks a year when I go to work and it’s mild, and those six weeks. The ones I find easiest.
“In December I took three, four weeks off work because of an ankle operation and I had periods of feeling like I was doing all kinds of things when I couldn’t get up at 3:40 a.m. That evening is what I want to do – like watching TV with my family, doing family things like that.”
Lewis said that when she’s not working her body clock usually makes her go to bed at midnight and wake up at 9 in the morning.
She said that her decision was happily carried out by her 20 and 17-year-old daughters and they look forward to spending more evenings with her.
The mother of two said she doesn’t mind having a taxi service for them, as she hasn’t been able to haul them around for the rest of her breakfast career.