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22nd Sep 2022

The Queen’s funeral had fewer viewers than Princess Diana’s according to initial estimates

Charlie Herbert

The Queen’s funeral had fewer viewers than Princess Diana’s

The overnight figures provide a snapshot of how many tuned into the Queen’s funeral.

The overnight viewing figures for the Queen’s funeral have been announced, revealing that events such as the Euro 2020 final and Princess Diana’s funeral were both watched by bigger audiences.

A peak of 29 million TV viewers watched Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral on Monday, making it one of the biggest UK audiences of all time.

But this is less than the 32m who watched Diana’s funeral in 1997, and the 29.85m who watched the Euro 2020 final between England and Italy last year.

However, calculations around viewership are complicated by the number of channels that were broadcasting the funeral and the fact that many will have watched on laptops or other devices, as well as communally in pubs, cinemas or care homes.

In a tweet, the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board, which is responsible for recording TV audiences, said that the Queen’s funeral service was watched by an average audience of 26.2m across all channels, and 95 percent of the total television audience.

The vast majority chose the BBC’s coverage for the funeral on Monday, with 19.5m tuning in to watch Huw Edwards and Kirsty Young present the event on BBC One, and a further two million watching on BBC Two.

A BBC spokesperson said: “The majority of the UK public – 32.5 million – turned to BBC coverage of the state funeral of HM Queen Elizabeth II. Her Majesty the Queen lying in state was streamed 25 million times across BBC online.”

The i reports that ITV’s broadcast, fronted by Tom Bradby and Julie Etchingham, was watched by 5.34 million, whilst Sky News attracted 934,000 viewers.

In the US, roughly 11.4m watched the funeral, the LA Times reports. This is just under a third of the number of viewers who tuned into Princess Diana’s service 25 years ago.

Reasons for this much lower viewing figure could be the fact that the four-hour event on Monday aired in the early morning and daytime hours in the US. It’s also likely that many people streamed Monday’s funeral from a variety of sources, which are not included in American viewing figures.

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