Heartbeat returns with nearly 6 million viewers

Rural drama series Heartbeat returned to ITV1 last night for its final season and drew nearly 6 million viewers. Elsewhere the debut of talent show Don’t Stop Believing attracted a modest 1.4 million viewers for Five.


Sunday evening favourite Heartbeat returned to ITV1 last night for the final series of the 1960s based cop-drama. ITV announced last year that production on the drama, along with spin-off The Royal, had been suspended while it worked through a backlog of filmed episodes. However, ATV Today stated at the time that both dramas had been axed by ITV – something it denied until recently. The return of Heartbeat to ITV’s Sunday line-up attracted strong ratings with nearly 6 million viewers. Heartbeat had seen its ratings drop below 5 million viewers for some episode but last nights return pulled in 5.9 million. Following the drama was Scottish series Taggart which pulled in 5 million viewers at 9pm.


The debut of Five’s new talent search Don’t Stop Believing was somewhat modest with 1.4 million viewers for 90 minutes between 7pm and 8.30. Five were doubtless hoping for a stronger launch for the new talent contest but ratings may improve over subsequent editions. Over on BBC One Antiques Roadshow had 4.5 million viewers at 7pm while Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, starring Orlando Bloom and Johnny Deep, had 3.2 million viewers for BBC One. The television premier of The Damned United had 3 million for BBC Two at 9pm while a brand new episode of Top Gear had 5.7 million viewers.


On Channel Four the Sunday edition of Big Brother had just 2 million viewers while Alan Carr: Catty Man had 1.5 million viewers.