Dave Hughes to depart The Project desk

2013-12-08_0410Comedian Dave Hughes will depart The Project fulltime to focus on his stand-up act.

He will be replaced by Peter Helliar.

‘Hughesy,’ who also quit his breakfast radio commitments, will still appear on the show regularly but is no longer part of the Charlie Pickering / Carrie Bickmore trio.

All three were Project originals, along with Ruby Rose and James Mathison, when the show first started on TEN five years ago. But the latter two did not survive.

“I’ve had the pleasure of filling in for Hughesy in 2013 and now, after getting over the disappointment of missing out on the So You Think You Can Dance Australia hosting gig, I’m incredibly proud to be joining Carrie and Charlie on The Project in 2014. I look forward to covering everything from Royal Commissions to Justin Bieber’s latest stripper/graffiti/pet-monkey adventures, often in the same show, sometimes in the same story,” he said.

“It’s been a tough decision to give up my regular seat on the desk next to Carrie, Charlie and every other brilliant person who works on the show. It was a unique way to do news when it started almost five years ago and it still is.

“I’m proud to have been involved from its birth. I’ve been banging on about doing a proper national stand-up tour for years and if I don’t do it now before my kids start school, I never will. I will still pop up on the show from the road on a weekly basis whether they like it or not. Good luck to Pete, even though he won’t need it, he has always been fantastic on the show.”


  1. Hughesy is getting out at the right time ….. when the ratings are dropping ….. and his replacement is a (ten) comedian who has been in a few of the other programs which sank like a stone ….. not a good move ……

  2. it says that he is leaving his fulltime position. Which means he’s not leaving! Will he remain on as part-time or just casual is the main question.

  3. This is sad (but understandable) news. Very glad Pete Hellier is his replacement. He’s proven to be very good whenever he’s back-filled in that chair! 🙂

  4. @ Mr.J – You could be on to something. Or maybe since he is no longer doing breakfast Radio he could be going to Wake Up. I agree that something does not seem right with this. One would think TEN would give him time off to do a stand up tour. My tip is that he will go to Nine. Nine News at 6pm, ACA at 6.30pm and a half hour Dave Hughes news/comedy at 7pm. Remember that The 7pm Project was at times doing over 1 million viewers.

  5. Something seems not quite right about his reasoning. His kids would all be in school now, most people at that stage would be taking on more, he’s scaling right back.

    Anyone remember when mike Munro had a highly publicised retirement party with his ch9 colleagues just a few weeks before being announced as host of SN? Perhaps dave has signed on to another network?

  6. So sad to see Dave Hughes go. Dave Hughes has been an outstanding presenter on The Project over the past four years. Good luck to 2014 and beyond.

  7. Gee I will miss Hughesy. The Project will no longer be essential viewing for me. Not a huge fan of Pete. Would of much preferred Tom Gleeson. He was always great on The Project. They should of taken more time to come up with a replacement but good luck to both Hughesy and to Pete.

  8. So, let me get this right channel 10….. You are going to replace someone who is funny and entertaining, with someone who isn’t….that makes complete sense. Looks like you enjoy being beaten by the ABC.

  9. IMHO…this is the best announcement The Project has ever made. Dave has always looked uncomfortable on The Project. He was not a great performer and embarrassing at times. Peter H and Lemo are much better talent and I feel the show will rate better with this switch.

  10. I’m quite happy to see him go, he was the most overexposed person on TV, and not all that funny, IMHO. Peter Helliar (or Limo) are much better propositions. and Dave Gleeson better than them all.

  11. He’s crazy..Alot of people go to his live show because he’s on the Project and his name is current.Without being on TV and radio, he has less opprtunity for people to want to see him.I wonder if he has another TV show in the pipeline he doesn’t want to talk about?

  12. Peter Helliar is the worst choice for hs replacement, he has never said a funny thing in his life. This will actually put me off watching the show. Why do they need to bring in all the same Roving cast?

  13. I was actually thinking the other day when he left radio if he’d do the same with The Project. Got to say, I’m rather happy about this. His voice is too grating, he’s far too awkward and rather unfunny. I always prefer when Hellier is on the desk. Looking forward to this change.
    I wonder how the show would fair if they lost Pickering or Bickmore. I guess Georgi Coghlan and Waleed Aly respectively would replace them. But would the show still have the same dynamic?

  14. I would’ve preferred Lehmo as a replacement as I think he works a lot better on the panel than Pete.

    Good to see Hughesy go back to his real love – stand up comedy.

  15. carolemorrissey

    What a shame, I love Hughesy. I thought when he left radio it must have been because it was too much with his TV commitments. I like Peter Helliar too, so he will be good.

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