BBC's Take the Floor host Robbie Shepherd dies at 87 as co-stars pay tribute to 'legend'

Veteran BBC presenter Robbie Shepherd has died at the age of 87.

Robbie was beloved by fans for his passion for Scotland’s north-east Doric dialect.

He was also well known for hosting hit BBC Radio Scotland show Take the Floor and was often heard as a commentator at the Highland Games.

The event was often attended by members of the Royal Family, including the late Queen Elizabeth II.

The Aberdeen-born star retired from his dance music show in 2016, after fronting it for 35 years.

During his impressive career, Robbie was awarded an MBE and was inducted into a hall of fame by the Trad Music Awards.

After the sad news of his death was announced today, his co-stars and fans rushed to social media to pay tribute.

Robbie’s BBC co-star Fiona Stalker said: “A legend. A gent. A pleasure to work with.”

Gary Innes, who replaced Robbie on BBC Radio Scotland when he retired, became close friends with the broadcaster.

Gary shared in tribute to his colleague and pal: “The man was a legend.

“After 35 years he left with such grace and dignity. I said to him: ‘Robbie, I have no idea how on Earth I am ever going to fill your boots’.

“And he just said with that lovely Doric accent: ‘Ach Gary, ye ken I’m only a size five, you’ll be fine’.”

SNP MP Fiona Hyslop also commented: “Sorry to hear this – I taught my kids when they were very wee how to ceilidh dance in our kitchen when Robbie Shepherd and ‘Take the Floor’ came on after the Football scores on Radio Scotland on a Saturday.

“Thoughts with his family at this time.”

BBC Scotland director Steve Carson said the host’s Take the Floor programme was an important fixture of Scottish cultural life for decades.

He shared in a poignant tribute: “All of us at BBC Scotland are desperately sad to hear the news of his passing.

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends in Aberdeen, and the wider family of radio listeners all around the world who loved hearing his Doric voice and his enthusiasm and passion for the music he so dearly loved.”