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The BBC continues to dominate terrestrial television, with 58
of the top 100 most watched shows broadcast in 2013 – according
to industry figures.
ITV was the only one of the five terrestrial broadcasters to
increase its audience share last year.
The BBC and Channel 4 both took a post-Olympics hit, dropping
their overall audience share.
However, the BBC still retains the most watched programmes in
the key drama, comedy and factual categories.
In the comedy/entertainment category, seven of the top 10 shows
were shown on the BBC including BBC One’s Still Open All Hours
– 2013′s best comedy performer – Mrs Brown’s Boys and Strictly
Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary episode also took the most
watched drama crown, beating Downton Abbey’s latest series
finale. But ITV had six of the top 10 drama shows, including
Broadchurch and Mr Selfridge.
Consolidated Barb data,
published by industry magazine Broadcast, reveals that
ITV’s share grew by 3.5% last year across all hours, while its
peak share was up 5.6%.
Figures were boosted by the success of long-running hits such
as Downton and I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here. ITV soaps
Coronation Street and Emmerdale also both performed strongly,
with the Street growing by 6% and Emmerdale growing by 3%.
In contrast, BBC stalwarts EastEnders dropped by more than 4.5%
and Holby City by 5%.
Channel 4 fared poorly in the ratings, with no shows in the top
100 and significant slumps in audience numbers on previous hits
such as One Born Every Minute.
BBC Two and Channel 5 also both suffered drops in audience
share. BBC Two was down by 5.4% to 5.83% across all hours -
putting it just ahead of the 5.79% recorded by Channel 4.
Channel 5 was marginally down on its 2012 figures.
BBC One’s coverage of London’s New Year fireworks display
achieved the biggest average TV audience of 2013, with a
consolidated audience of 13.52 million including viewings on
catch-up services like the BBC’s iPlayer.
‘Icing on the cake’
Earlier this week, the BBC announced that the third series of
Sherlock had become its “most-watched series in over a decade”.
An average of 11.82 million people tuned in for the third
series of the detective drama on BBC One.
The first episode – in which Holmes, played by Benedict
Cumberbatch, returned from his apparent death – had a
consolidated audience of 12.72 million, while the other two
programmes attracted 11.38 million viewers.
BBC One controller Charlotte Moore said: “This latest accolade
is the icing on the cake and only further demonstrates the
audience’s huge appetite and appreciation for original British
drama on BBC One.”