He may have avoided a clash with BBC1’s Sunday morning politics staple Andrew Marr, but Robert Peston found himself up against the sunshine yesterday morning as he launched his new political magazine show on ITV with an interview with George Osbourne.
Peston on Sunday, which began yesterday following the former BBC economics editor’s move to ITV earlier this year, got off to a disappointing start in the ratings, drawing in an average of 167,000 viewers at 10am compared with Marr’s 1.59 million an hour earlier – nearly ten times that of his rival.
Of course, there are a number of factors at play here – the glorious summer weather, the launch of a show yet to establish its audience competing against The Big Questions on the Beeb which pulled in 745,000, and the fact that ITV’s Sunday morning ratings peaked with an underwhelming average of 190,000 tuning into The Jeremy Kyle Show at 11am. A reverse in the commercial broadcaster’s Sunday morning fortunes is unlikely to come about immediately.
Nevertheless, ITV’s new political editor was no doubt hoping for a stronger start to his Sunday morning tenure as he attempts to draw viewers from The Andrew Marr Show. But the BBC series has been a mainstay of the Corporations’ schedules since 2005 and flexed its muscles yesterday with scoops from Prince Harry, Michael Gove and newly elected London Mayor Sadiq Khan, proving that for now it rules the roost when it comes to Sunday morning politics.