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Thursday, 24 January, 2002, 16:21 GMT
Crossroads faces uncertain future
The cast of Crossroads
Crossroads relaunched with a massive fanfare
ITV soap Crossroads could face the axe if ratings do not improve, according to reports.

The show - which returned to the screens after a 13-year absence - will air until September.

A decision will have to be taken in the spring or early summer as to whether it will continue.

The daytime soap was originally commissioned by ITV for one year and will celebrate its first anniversary in March.

ITV has already recommissioned Crossroads from Carlton for shows up until September.

Kathy Staff
Kathy Staff returned to the hotel but has since announced she is leaving
But ITV's head of drama, Nick Elliot, told the Guardian the future of the programme will be seriously considered if ratings do not pick up soon.

Crossroads was relaunched in a blaze of glory in March 2001, promising a mix of new and old characters, ensuring an audience of 5.5 million in its opening week.

But according to a Crossroads spokesman, ratings dipped and quickly levelled off to its current figure of about 3.5 million across its evening and lunchtime showing.

He added: "At present we have be commissioned up until September and we would like to see the ratings go up in that time so its future is secure."


It first went out five times a week but this was then cut to four to cut down on expenditure.

The same also happened to the original soap, before it was eventually shelved in 1988.

In its heyday Crossroads attracted an audience of 18 million viewers but was both maligned and revered by fans and critics alike for its wooden acting and wobbly sets.

Once a shabby motel, Crossroads was upgraded to a four star hotel complete with executive suites and a health spa.

Its BBC One rival Neighbours draws about 6.3 million viewers over its two daily showings.

But the newest daytime soap Night and Day is struggling to attract viewers despite being billed as a totally new style of soap.

Since its launch in September 2001 it has been averaging audiences of 1.4 million for its teatime edition.

See also:

06 Mar 01 | Entertainment
'Slick' Crossroads a hit with critics
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Bad service at new Crossroads
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Crossroads makes comeback
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
A brief history of Crossroads
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Crossroads - then and now
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