The BBC has announced that Laura Kuenssberg is to replace Nick Robinson as political editor, the first woman to hold the post.

Kuenssberg, who joined the BBC in 2000 as a trainee journalist in Newcastle, has been the chief correspondent and a presenter on Newsnight since February 2014.

Laura Kuenssberg

Laura Kuenssberg

She was previously business editor at ITV News and has also worked across BBC programmes including Daily Politics and the Today programme, Breakfast and the News at Ten. She was also its chief political correspondent from 2009 to 2011.

Italy-born Kuenssberg, who was raised in Glasgow, said: “I’m completely delighted and I recognise the responsibility on my shoulders. It’s an honour for me to follow Nick Robinson who has been such an outstanding Political Editor.”

Tony Hall, director-general, said: “Laura’s an exceptional journalist – I saw that for myself in our studio on election night. Her knowledge of Westminster politics is second to none, but she also has a real flair for asking the questions the audience want answering.

“We’re lucky to have had Nick in the role for ten years now – and a brilliant field of candidates for what is one of the best jobs in broadcasting. But I’m sure Laura will bring something extra to the role – something of her own style. And I wish her all the very best.”

Kuenssberg replaces Macclesfield-born Robinson, who is to replace James Naughtie as a presenter on Radio’s 4 Today programme.