Lockdown boosts Channel 5 audience

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UK commercial PSB Channel 5 has grown its peak time share of viewing more than any other UK commercial terrestrial channel since the beginning of the Covid-19 lockdown. Since lockdown began on March 23rd, the channel was up 17 per cent YOY during peak time hours, taking it from a 3.64 per cent to a 4.27 per cent share.

The strong ratings during lockdown have primarily been driven by factual and drama programming. New royal documentary Princess Anne: The Daughter Who Should Be Queen and ‘real-time’ documentary series Police: Hour of Duty achieved 2.1 million and 1.9 million viewers respectively. Meanwhile, series two of psychological thriller Blood drew over 1.9 million viewers, whilst a number of returning favourites continue to perform, including The Yorkshire Vet (2 million), Police Interceptors (2 million) and Springtime On The Farm (1.7 million).

“Covid-19 has significantly impacted our programming pipeline, so it’s encouraging to see this growth in Channel 5’s  peak time share of viewing in spite of the recent challenges,” commented Ben Frow, Director of Programmes, ViacomCBS Networks UK. “We’ve kept a steady focus on providing a genuine alternative for viewers, with content that is both escapist and familiar, and it’s a relief that we are now able to get back into production, so that we will be able to continue refreshing the schedule.”


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