Agencies have welcomed the changes to ITV’s peak-time schedule, as
the first few days without News at Ten showed healthy viewing figures
with nearly half the country tuning in on Monday evening.
The ITV Evening News with Trevor McDonald was the most watched news
programme of the night, with an audience of 7.3 million and a 33 per
cent share of viewing. BBC1’s Six O’Clock News attracted 6.5 million
viewers and a 32 per cent share.
The later news bulletin, ITV Nightly News at 11pm, attracted 3.1 million
viewers. News at Ten drew audiences of around seven million last
Scrapping News At Ten allowed ITV to run Kavanagh QC - the legal drama
series starring John Thaw - from 9pm through to 10.30pm. The programme
achieved a 46 per cent audience share, with 10.3 million viewers tuning
BBC1’s Nine O’Clock News had 4.9 million viewers and a 21 per cent
share, in line with the previous week.
David Cuff, the broadcast director of Initiative Media, watched the
entire ITV peak-time schedule and said the new look ’signals the
beginning of a more commercially unfettered ITV’.
According to Cuff, moving the news gives ITV more scheduling options
and, although many plans are still shrouded in secrecy, it seems to be
making more of the right sort of programmes.
Other ITV shows on Monday evening included Who Wants to be a
Millionnaire?, with 12 million viewers and a 46 per cent share, and a
new comedy series, The Grimleys, which ran at 10.30pm and attracted 5.9