Joe Duffy has paid tribute to fellow RTÉ broadcaster Aonghus McAnally on his retirement, calling him the "best in the business". 

McAnally, who is also a musician, magician and an international billiards player, is due to step down on Saturday, which is also his birthday, after 41 years working in RTÉ television and radio.

The Dubliner entered show business in the early seventies as a guitarist with trad rock group Mushroom and began his broadcasting career presenting Saturday morning children's show Anything Goes and went on to appear on such programmes as gameshow The Lyrics Board, present radio series Both Sides Now, and produce Liveline

Aonghus McAnally performing as Christie Hennessy 

Writing on Twitter, Duffy said, "Aonghus worked in RTÉ for 41 years - in many roles - including my boss, when he was producer in charge of Liveline. As his career - so far - ends in RTÉ tomorrow, it reminds me that Aonghus McAnally embraces the four seasons of the year, from the gaiety and warmth of summer in the bands he’s played in, Mushroom, Wanderly Wagon, The Big Top Show or Anything Goes and The Lyrics Board.

"The courage and change of Autumn - embodied in his ability to move from different roles with ease and enthusiasm. And the growth and life of Spring in his many varied skills, including supreme guitarist, magician and international billiards player.

Duffy added: "The sadness, depth and courage of winter embodied in his presenting work on the emigrants programme Both Sides Now, and his production work on Liveline bringing very difficult and important stories to air.

Aonghus pictured in 1985 

"Personally, he is one of my closest friends in RTÉ, we will of course meet again. This is just another step in his work career which began half a century ago." 

The son of multi-BAFTA winning actor Ray McAnally (The Mission, My Left Foot) and actress Ronnie Masterson (Angela's Ashes), for the past few years McAnally has also performed and hosted An Evening of Songs, Stories and Laughter with Aonghus McAnally, a musical journey through the songs that have shaped his life and 40-year career.

He has also collaborated with his actor son, Aonghus Óg, on a tribute to Tralee musician Christie Hennessy. 

Broadcaster Bibi Baskin and Riverdance producer and Chair of the RTÉ Board, Moya Doherty, were among those who also paid tribute to McAnally on his retirement. 

Alan Corr @CorrAlan2