Politicians and decision makers held up a glass last night as Jeremy Paxman, famous for his uncompromising interviewing style, signed off on his last ever Newsnight after 25 years at the helm of The BBC’s current affairs spearhead.

Jeremy PaxmanJeremy Paxman is hanging up his tie after 25 years on the job

Director general Tony Hall has described Paxman as "a rare and dazzling talent", while the corporation's head of news, James Harding, said he had become the "great lion of BBC journalism" who "never failed to ask the difficult questions".

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Paxman’s final show included an interview with his perennial ‘nemesis’ Boris Johnson who, despite many tumultuous interviews and hilarious run-ins, appears to be a warm friend of the departing anchor. Their bike ride through London on a tandem bicycle was a fitting end to their on-screen amity. 

Then there was Paxman’s actual goodbye, in which he implored the public to open their windows and express their disdain at the country’s running. After 25 years of making politicians squirm in their seats, he wants them squirming in the streets. 

"Thank you for watching. I hope you go on enjoying the programme. Goodnight and goodbye," said Paxman, signing off, before ‘I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony)' accompanied his fade to black. However, just when he seemed to be gone forever, Paxo appeared again in front of a BBC weather map: "Tomorrow's weather: more of the same. Don't know why they make such a fuss about it,” he grumbled. 

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The BBC said Paxman had decided to leave the BBC Two programme last summer, but "generously agreed" to stay to help the show through "a difficult period". He will continue host University Challenged amongst other documentaries, and is hitting The Edinburgh Fringe Festival with a one-man show in August.