Radio New Zealand has credited former presenter John Campbell for increasing the audience of its Saturday morning programme.

The show was hosted by Campbell between May 2000 and April this year, when Kim Hill took over from the TV3 news anchor.

A survey conducted in May and June showed the programme had 17,000 more listeners than the previous year.

RNZ, when releasing the results, said the survey showed "audiences for Kim Hill's programme have increased on last year's Saturday morning audiences from 228,000 in 2001 to 245,000 people".

A spokesman for RNZ said Hill had been on air for about two weeks when the survey period started.

"We believe John Campbell had consolidated and grown his audience during the previous 12 months."