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BBC Thirteen

BBC Three racks up record audiences following digital only switch

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By John Glenday, Reporter

April 8, 2016 | 1 min read

The decision to terminate BBC Three broadcasts in favour of a digital-only approach has apparently been vindicated after the channel attracted 2.4m viewers to abduction drama Thirteen.

This is close to the highest ever audience of 2.5m recorded by the channel, reached during a 2006 episode of Dr Who spin-off Torchwood, and will reassure BBC bosses that their decision to axe its airtime as a cost saving measure wasn’t a mistake.

Torchwood’s figure was attained without including subsequent iPlayer viewers and the show ultimately reached far more people via BBC2 and latterly BBC1.

Reacting to the numbers BBC3 controller Damian Kavanagh wrote in a blog post: “These are early days for BBC3 but I’m overjoyed with what we’ve achieved so far. It’s a marathon not a sprint but so far we’ve exceeded expectations.”

The BBC Trust had warned that the broadcaster risked losing its connection to 1m younger viewers whose channel of choice was BBC3.

BBC Thirteen

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