UK: Top Gear's Africa special gets almost 6m viewers


BBC2's Top Gear Africa Special, in which Clarkson and the boys attempted to find the source of the Nile, got the better of ITV's ailing Dancing on Ice on Sunday night with almost 6 million viewers.

The Top Gear Africa special, the first instalment of a two-parter to round off the current series, averaged 5.7 million viewers and a 19.6% audience share in the 8pm hour.

This audience included 1.1 million watching the BBC HD simulcast – a frisky figure for a channel that has otherwise struggled to establish itself, featuring as it does a mishmash of programming from all the corporation's TV channels other than BBC1 (which has its own dedicated HD channel).

No doubt partly in recognition of this, BBC HD is to be replaced with BBC2 HD on 26 March (the move is also part of the corporation's Delivering Quality First cost-cutting measures).

Top Gear had the better of ITV's All Star Family Fortunes (5.4 million/19.3%) and Dancing on Ice: The Skate Off (5.2 million/17.6%).