Election 2010

Sky News reporter Kay Burley’s live Elections interview gets sabotaged by an abrasive BBC fan.

Election Day, 6 May 2010, saw the culmination of the BBC’s coverage with a live results service on BBC One, BBC Radio 4 and BBC Radio 5 Live, as well as BBC Scotland, BBC Wales, BBC Northern Ireland and all BBC local radio stations.

BBC Online offered a comprehensive results service, as did the mobile mini-site and the Red Button, BBC’s Facebook and Twitter sites and Ceefax.

BBC’s TV election coverage last night around the UK had a total reach of 17.7 million across the BBC’s channels, according to provisional overnight figures between 9.55pm and 2am.

A peak audience of 6.6 million watched David Dimbleby anchor Election 2010 on BBC One, BBC HD, BBC News Channel and on BBC Two in the nations, with a 4.7 million average, 36.1 per cent share and 16.1 million reach.

The simulcast of Election 2010 on the BBC News Channel was watched by an average of 942,000 people and on BBC HD by an average of 64,000.

On BBC’s Election 2010 programme, the peak of 6.6 million came around the Houghton and Sunderland South declaration between 10.45pm and 11pm.

At 10pm, there was a joint NOP Mori poll with the BBC, Sky and ITN, which kicked off BBC One’s Election Night programme.

On radio, BBC News offered extensive coverage about the results, including Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live election night specials.

The provisional figures show that between 9.55pm and 2.00am BBC One Scotland attracted a 26 per cent share (280,000 viewers), with 15 per cent (150,000) also watching on BBC Two Scotland.

BBC One Wales attracted a 24 per cent share (106,000 viewers), and over on S4C, BBC Cymru Wales’s Welsh language programme had an average audience of 10,000 viewers.

BBC One Northern Ireland had a 31 per cent share (117,000 viewers), with 2 per cent (7,000) also watching on BBC Two.

The BBC’s multimedia offering also performed well. On the Election Day, there were 2.5 million UK visitors to the BBC Election website, and 11.5 million page impressions according to provisional figures. The most popular feature on the site was the Live Coverage page, with 2 million page hits from UK users.

The BBC News website overall saw over 4 million UK users on Election Day and 45 million page impressions, more than double the UK page views on Election Day in 2005. There were also over 3 million views of News video by UK users on the BBC News site yesterday, higher than for any other day on record.

The figures for the Election Night follow healthy figures for the BBC’s coverage of the General Election across the whole of the campaign.

According to an independent survey for the BBC, over 40 million adults claimed to have accessed the BBC’s election news and information each week during the campaign.

The main news bulletins, Newsnight, Daily Politics, Question Time, The Andrew Marr Show and other news programmes have performed well throughout the campaign, helping audiences to understand what the parties stand for and providing fair, accurate and impartial information.

BBC Three also encouraged younger audiences to get involved with the political process with its two First Time Voters Question Time programmes, hosted by Dermot O’Leary.

The Jeremy Paxman interviews with the three main party leaders on BBC One were watched by millions: with Nick Clegg by 2.17m (12 April), with David Cameron by 2.34m (23 April) and with Gordon Brown by 2.56m (30 April).

The BBC’s Prime Ministerial Debate was watched on BBC One, BBC HD and BBC News Channel by an average of 8.1m on Thursday 29 April, with a share of 31.2 per cent and reach of 13.3 million.

Overall, viewing across all BBC channels and Sky News peaked at 9.4m between 9pm and 9.15pm on the night.

BBC Parliament with its comprehensive coverage of the election successfully doubled its audience during the campaign, achieving a new record for the channel with a weekly reach of nearly a million people (942,000).

The most used Election website feature during the campaign was the constituency map, with more than 8m UK page impressions (up to 5 May).

The BBC election mobile mini-site has seen over 6.5 million UK page impressions during the campaign (up to 5 May). The BBC’s election Facebook and Twitter sites also proved popular, with 8,059 following Twitter updates and more than 22,000 following the Facebook site.

BBC’s chief political correspondent Laura Kuennsberg’s tweets have been followed by more than 11,000 people, and digital election correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones has had more than 15,000 followers.

The BBC has also received more than 150 “If I Were PM” videos made by members of the public, outlining what was important for them in this election.

Helen Boaden, Director of BBC News, said:

“This has been an extraordinarily exciting and important General Election campaign where audiences have relished BBC News output.

“We are proud that they have come to us in large numbers throughout the campaign and have trusted us to be clear, fair and impartial.”

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