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Final leaders' debate brings in 7.3 million

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Prime Ministerial debate

© ITV

Over 7 million viewers tuned in to the third and final leaders' debate on Thursday night.

The 90-minute debate, hosted by David Dimbleby, drew an average audience of 7.26m (27.9%) between 8.30pm and 10pm on BBC One.

That figure is up more than 3 million from the total live audience across Sky News, Sky 3 and the BBC News Channel for last week's second debate. However, ITV1's coverage of the first leaders' debate attracted an average audience of almost 9.5m the week before that.

Earlier on BBC One, Watchdog picked up 4.05m (17.5%) between 8pm and 8.30pm – an increase of more than 800k on the previous week.

ITV1's Great Cities of the World with Griff Rhys Jones averaged 2.88m (11.1%) in the 9pm hour, roughly on a par with the previous week.

Meanwhile, Five's live Europa League coverage pulled in a sizeable average of 3.22m (13.2%) between 7.30pm and 10pm.

Channel 4 performed less impressively during primetime, with The Landscape Man attracting 1.11m (4.5%) in the 8pm hour and How The Other Half Live interesting 1.34m (5.2%) between 9pm and 10pm.

BBC Two's live snooker coverage attracted an average of 1.18m (5.3%) between 7pm and 9pm. The audience then dropped to 970k (3.5%) for Welcome To Lagos in the 9pm hour.

Overall, BBC One won primetime with an average share of 26.8% to ITV1's 17.0%. Five was third with 12.6%, followed by BBC Two with 4.6% and Channel 4 with 4.1% (+1: 0.5%).

Aside from a repeat of EastEnders, the most-watched multichannel programme of the day was Russell Howard's Good News, which drew 756k (4.2%) to BBC Three between 10.30pm and 11pm.

BARB ratings data supplied by Attentional

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