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3.2m see Blumenthal take on 'Little Chef'

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3.2m see Blumenthal take on 'Little Chef'
Heston Blumenthal's new series for Channel 4 got off to an encouraging start in the ratings last night (Monday), early figures show.

Big Chef Takes On Little Chef, which sees the celebrated chef attempt to turn around the fortunes of the ailing restaurant chain, averaged 3.18m (13.1%) in the 9pm hour.

It was Channel 4's most-watched programme of the day, outranking traditional ratings winner Celebrity Big Brother. The daily BB highlights show - broadcast at the earlier time of 8pm - took just 1.7m (6.8%) for the hour, a new series low, however a sizable 513k (2.3%) watched Channel 4+1's 9pm repeat.

A second show, which featured the surprise eviction of Michelle Heaton, had a much more respectable 2.99m (16.5%) between 10pm and 10.50pm.

Channel 4's average primetime share rose more than two points to 9.5%.

After a solid start last week with 7.2m, Suranne Jones drama Unforgiven took a huge tumble in its second week. The latest episode pulled in 5.52m (22.6%) in the 9pm hour, outdoing the concluding half of BBC One's Hunter, which had 4.7m (19.2%).

The first visit to Coronation Street took 9.54m (39.8%) for ITV1 at 7.30pm, then a second episode managed 8.99m (35.5%) an hour later. EastEnders drew 9.11m (36.4%) for BBC One and 559k (3%) for BBC Three, while Emmerdale put in 7.91m (36%).

Hollyoaks logged 1.83m (8.7%) for Channel 4 and 656k (3.4%) for E4 - the best multichannel numbers of the day - while on Five, Neighbours had 1.55m (9.1%) and Home & Away had 1.05m (5.3%).

ITV1 still dominated primetime overall, but dropped from a share of 28.3% last week to 25.6%. BBC One was roughly even with 21.1%.

On BBC Two, the second quarter-final of University Challenge interested 3.16m (12.6%) at 8pm, then a new week of MasterChef began with 2.99m (11.9%) at 8.30pm. In the 9pm hour, the second episode of stock market reality show Million Dollar Traders appealed to 1.13m (4.6%). The channel's share was down to 6.6% in primetime.

Five was a distant fifth place for the night, but did improve its average share by half a point to 3.4%. Fifth Gear picked up 812k (3.2%) at 8pm, then documentary War Zone brought in 746k (3%). Action movie Cobra, starring former partners Sylvester Stallone and Brigitte Nielsen, kept 980k (6.9%) until 11.50pm.

Elsewhere, a double-bill of 24 attracted 474k (2.4%) to Sky1 from 9pm, a fall of around 150k on last week's premiere.

Ratings data supplied by Attentional

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