Great British Bake Off launch marks the biggest Channel 4 broadcast since 1985

The first episode of GBBO's 11th series was watched by over 10.8 million viewers, Channel 4 has announced.

The Great British Bake Off

Series 11 of the Great British Bake Off debuted to an audience of 10.8 million viewers last week, earning the highest ratings of any Channel 4 show since 1985.

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The broadcaster announced the news today by releasing its consolidated viewing figures from the last week, which take account of time-shifted viewing on a television over a seven day period.

An average of 10.8 million viewers watched the first episode of GBBO’s 11th series, making up a 38.3 per cent share of the audience.

The record-breaking performance makes last week’s episode Channel 4’s biggest broadcast since 1985 miniseries A Woman of Substance starring Liam Neeson, Miranda Richardson, Deborah Kerr and Barry Bostwick.

Channel 4 also revealed over 2.8 million 16-34 year olds – a 61.4 per cent share of the young demographic – watched last week’s episode of Bake Off, making it the biggest programme for young viewers on any channel so far this year, barring addresses from the Prime Minister.

A further 1.1 million viewers watched Bake Off’s repeats on Channel 4, E4 and 4Seven, while viewing on Channel 4’s on-demand service All 4 rose by 35 per cent from last year’s launch episode.

During the night of broadcast, 6.9 million viewers tuned in to watch the episode live – marking Bake Off’s biggest ever overnight launch audience on Channel 4 – while 4 million watched the show on catch-up or via repeats.

This year’s series of Bake Off has seen the introduction of Matt Lucas as the show’s newest presenter, after the departure of Bake Off favourite Sandi Toksvig in January.

The 2020 series was filmed during the pandemic in July and August, and required the Great British Bake Off contestants and crew to isolate together in a self-contained biosphere for six weeks to ensure all filming was COVID-compliant.

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Two episodes of series 11 have aired so far, with yesterday’s biscuit themed week challenging the remaining contestants with a coconut macaroons technical.

The Great British Bake Off is on Tuesdays on Channel 4 at 8pm. If you’re looking for more to watch check out our TV Guide.