RATINGS! Great British Bake Off 2018 begins with over 6 million viewers

The Great British Bake Off (2018)

The Great British Bake Off 2018 launched to just over 6 million viewers on Channel 4 last night.

The second series since moving from BBC One - and ninth overall - averaged 6.1 million viewers between 8PM and 9:15PM.

It was down 400,000 viewers on last year's launch and 4 million on the final BBC One series' opener.

However, the episode was up on the first four series of Bake Off to air on its previous channel.

What's more, it gave Channel 4 its biggest audience of the year so far. It beat its own spin-off, The Great Celebrity Bake Off, which averaged over 4 million viewers in the Spring.

In the opening instalment of the new series, the tent awaited 12 of the nation's best amateur bakers, as they took their place under the critical eye of judges Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith with Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig returning for presenting duties.

Breaking with tradition, this year the series kicked off with Biscuit Week. The bakers tackled signature biscuits that said something both about them and a place in the British Isles.

Next the bakers faced their first Technical, Wagon Wheels, before the bakers had to be picture perfect with their first showstopper - a spectacular 3D biscuit portrait challenge that required precision baking and superb decorating skills.

The new series continues Tuesday nights on Channel 4 at 8PM.

Elsewhere last night, EastEnders and Holby City had 4.8 million and 3.3 million viewers on BBC One respectively.

On Channel 5, Celebrity Big Brother continued with 1.3 million viewers as its latest eviction took place, losing out to First Dates Hotel which averaged 1.6 million on Channel 4 after Bake Off.

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