BBC News audience up by a quarter on last year

The weekly BBC News TV audience has gone up by almost a quarter this year, according to a post by Kevin Bakhurst, controller of the BBC News Channel, on the BBC Editors blog yesterday.

He reports that so far in 2010 9.6 million people have watched the channel each week, a 24 per cent increase on 2009 when the average was 7.7 million.

This year has seen many major news stories, including the UK general election, the Haiti earthquake, the Pakistan floods, the shootings in Cumbria and the Chilean miners. During events like these, some traumatic and some complex, many people turn to the BBC.

…The highest reach recorded for a UK news channel and for the BBC News Channel (7.4m) was on 11 May, the day that Gordon Brown resigned and David Cameron became prime minister. This was closely followed by 7 May, the day after the general election, when 7m watched and 13 October when 6.9m watched the rescue of the Chilean miners.

On the BBC News website, on the day after the general election, there were more than 5.5 million requests for the live BBC News channel page and around 3 million requests for the live page on the day the Chilean miners were rescued, he added.

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