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Last Updated: Saturday, 27 December, 2003, 17:04 GMT
Fools and Horses 'top Christmas show'
Only Fools and Horses stars
Only Fools and Horses was the most watched show
The Christmas ratings war was won by the BBC with the latest instalment of comedy favourite Only Fools and Horses, according to preliminary figures.

The adventures of Del Boy and Rodney Trotter were watched by 15.5 million viewers on Christmas Day.

The wedding of Alfie Moon and Kat Slater was a success for EastEnders, bringing in 14 million viewers for the 2030 episode and 11.4 million for the 1800 instalment.

The top rated ITV1 show was Coronation Street, which was watched by 11.8 million people.

Peak hours

Overall, seven of the top 10 shows on Christmas Day were screened by BBC One.

It's great to see the audience throw open its doors to BBC faces in a range of original home-grown programmes
Lorraine Heggessey
BBC One controller

On Christmas Day, the channel had a 34.8% share of viewers, rising to 45.5% during peak hours.

This compared to ITV1's 24% overall share and 29.9% peak hour share, the figures said.

Soaps took four of the top slots, with EastEnders and Coronation Street joined by Emmerdale, which had 8.3 million viewers and was the joint fifth most popular show.

After Only Fools and Horses, the most popular comedy was My Family, which matched Emmerdale on viewer numbers.


The Queen's speech was the seventh most watched programme, with 6.5 million viewers tuning in for the traditional broadcast.

Top 10 Christmas programmes
1. Only Fools and Horses - BBC One, 15.5m
2. EastEnders (2030 GMT) - BBC One, 14m
3. Coronation Street - ITV, 11.8m
4. EastEnders (1800 GMT) - BBC One, 11.4m
5= My Family - BBC One, 8.3m
5= Emmerdale - ITV1, 8.3m
7. BBC News (1745 GMT) - BBC One, 7.8m
8= Queen's Speech - BBC One, 6.5m
8= Posh and Becks' Big Impression - BBC One, 6.5m
9. Who Wants To Be A Millionaire Celebrity - ITV1, 6.3m

It was one place behind the BBC News at 1745, which was watched by 7.8 million people.

The final two shows in the top 10 were Posh and Becks' Big Impression, with 6.5 million viewers and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire Celebrity, which was seen by 6.3 million people.

On Christmas Eve BBC One had a 28.1% audience share, compared with ITV1's 20.2%.

During peak hours BBC1 had a 32.1% share against ITV1's 26.8%.

Welcoming the success of the BBC One shows, channel controller Lorraine Heggessey said: "It's great to see the audience throw open its doors to BBC faces in a range of original home-grown programmes."

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