Great British Bake Off final beats X Factor in the ratings as 9 million tune in to see winner

Bake Off audience dwarfs ITV ratings for Champions League football

Click to follow
The Independent Culture

The Great British Bake Off final pulled in more than nine million viewers last night, trouncing Saturday night's X Factor in the ratings.

An average of 8.4m people watched Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood judge the last round of bakes, and a peak audience of 9.1m tuned in to find out whether Frances Quinn, Kimberley Wilson or Ruby Tandoh had won.

The quaint, but incredibly tense cookery competition, which aims to find Britain's best amateur baker, has become a ratings juggernaut over the course of four acclaimed series.

Not only did it beat soap favourites Emmerdale and EastEnders to become the most-watched programme of the night, but according to BBC TV head of Comms Sam Hodges, it was BBC 2's "biggest show in at least a decade". Last year's final, which saw John Whaite crowned victor, attracted an average of 6.5m.

This year's final episode outscored Saturday's X Factor – ITV's flagship entertainment show – by more than 800,000 viewers, and drummed up more than double the audience of the UEFA Champions League clash between Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund.

Great British Bake Off's fifth series will be broadcast next year on BBC 1, where bosses will be hoping for even greater ratings success.

BBC 1 controller Charlotte Moore said her aim in moving the programme from its current home is to "bring the show to an even broader audience".

Its first series, won by Edd Kimber, scored a comparatively small average of 2.8m viewers per episode.