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Thursday, 24 February, 2000, 11:53 GMT
Channel 5 'bags Home and Away'
Home and Away
Home and Away boasts young stars, sun, sea and surf
Australian soap Home and Away is set to move from ITV to Channel 5, according to newspaper reports.

Channel 5 has poached the hit tea-time show - which attracts up to 8 million viewers a day - in a 40m auction deal, according to a report in The Guardian.

Channel 5 logo
Channel 5: Reported to be committed to the show for at least five years
ITV is said to have offered twice the amount being laid on the table by Channel 5. However, the show's Australian producers - Seven Network - are said to have been swayed by Channel 5's long-term commitment - more than five years - to the future of Home and Away.

Nonetheless, fans of the soap may have to face up to 12 months without it when ITV's contract with Seven Network runs out in July.

An exclusivity clause states that no other broadcaster can screen the soap for up to a year after it has ended on ITV.

Both ITV and Channel 5 have refused to comment on the Guardian's report.
Dannii Minogue
A younger Dannii Minogue played Emma in Home and Away
Home and Away is ITV's most successful Australian soap. Boasting a young cast, sun, sea and surfing, it has launched the careers of stars including pop star Dannii Minogue.

In the UK, it is shown twice a day, with the lunchtime show repeated at the end of the afternoon. A strong fan base of children and young adults makes it one of ITV's top 30 programmes and it is considered one of the jewels in the network's crown.

This is the first time the three-year-old Channel 5 has taken a programme from its older rival.

Both sides are currently thought to be in negotiations as Channel 5 tries to persuade ITV to allow transmission of Home and Away to continue immediately after it switches channels.

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