LETTER: Tonight's figures far from 'miserable'

Julian Bray is plain wrong with his assessment of Tonight's viewing figures and stature (Letters, 25 April).

I've never heard of Mr Bray, but his firm's website assures me he is 'an internationally recognised broadcaster, author and journalist' who has been 'influencing world and current affairs for over 30 years'.

All that striding around on the global stage might be exciting, but it seems to have left gaps in his knowledge of the media market in the UK.

According to him, ITV1's Tonight has 'miserable viewing figures' and little prestige.Yet Tonight has averaged over 3.2 million viewers this year: higher than any national newspaper circulation and consistently more than BBC's Panorama and Channel 4's Dispatches.

This is, of course, the same Tonight that has been Britain's most-watched current affairs series for the past nine years. As for lack of prestige, it has been voted Royal Television Society 'Programme of the Year' three times and won two BAFTAs.

As a viewer, Mr Bray is entitled to be dismissive of a programme with 80 slots a year in the heart of ITV1 peak-time. But as a PR man, I wouldn't want him advising any company of mine.

Jeff Anderson, controller, current affairs & documentaries, ITV1.

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