Tony Blair with Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley Breakfast show Daybreak, presented by Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley has "not performed as we would have hoped" after nearly six months
on air, ITV has admitted. Figures show that since Chiles and Bleakley relaunched the network's breakfast programme in early September it has averaged around 100,000 viewers fewer than the show it replaced, GMTV. ITV had high hopes for Daybreak when it launched in a blaze of publicity following the high-profile defections of Chiles and Bleakley from the BBC. However, according to Barb figures, Daybreak's average audience since it premiered on 6 September has been 800,000, an 18.5% share. During the same period the previous year – 6 September 2009 to 22 February 2010 – GMTV drew an average of 900,000 viewers, a 23.4% audience share.
The main winner following the demise of GMTV appears to have been BBC1's Breakfast, which has seen its average audience rise by 300,000. In the six months to 22 February, Breakfast averaged around 1.6 million viewers, compared with 1.3 million during the same time the previous year. ITV said in its 2010 results on Wednesday that "certain slots in the schedule have been disappointing. Daybreak has not performed as we would have hoped." However, the show's producers have been reacting to criticism from viewers and Chiles recently asked audiences to give it another try. From a dip in October to just 530,000 and 390,000 in December, it has recovered and in the final hour of the show, which ends at 8.30am, is now regularly topping 1 million viewers. The ITV chief executive, Adam Crozier, said the main thing was for the broadcaster to continue to invest in the show. "Clearly it has had a difficult introduction but the numbers have now settled down. It is bringing in a younger audience and the programme has got a lot better over the last few months. The key thing is to keep investing," he added. An ITV spokeswoman said: "Since Christmas 2010, Daybreak figures have again been growing steadily, with to date an average of 0.8m/19%. "In terms of profile, Daybreak is reaching a more upmarket and younger female audience year on year ... [between] 14 and 18 February saw us up 2% on ABC1 viewers compared to the same week with GMTV last year."