Boris Johnson’s TV address one of Britain’s most watched TV programmes

PUBLISHED: 11:57 25 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:04 25 March 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson placed the UK on lockdown amid coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. Picture: PA Video

Prime Minister Boris Johnson placed the UK on lockdown amid coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. Picture: PA Video

PA Wire/PA Images

Boris Johnson’s address to the nation on Monday evening was one of the most watched British television moments ever broadcast.

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Despite being pre-recorded, Johnson’s announcement about the tightening of coronavirus measures recorded 27.1 million viewers on linear television - putting it in line with viewing figures for the 1966 World Cup final and the funeral of princess Diana in 1997.

The World Cup final is the record holder for the most-watched programme in the UK with 32.3 milion viewers across ITV and BBC - but was in an era when there was far less competition.

The funeral of PDiana drew a peak television audience of 32.10 million viewers.

Johnson’s address is likely to attract a much larger viewing figures when catch-up and live streams are taken into account.

It aired on BBC One, ITV, Channel 4, Sky News, and the BBC News channel as well as appearing on Amazon Prime.

It is the first prime ministerial address in the country since Tony Blair announced the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

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