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Late Late Toy Show remains Ireland most-watched TV progamme with 1.6m viewers

An average audience of 1.33 million viewers watched the beloved annual special live to RTÉ One on Friday night

Neasa CumiskeySunday World

More than 1.5 million viewers tuned in to watch The Late Late Toy Show across the weekend, RTÉ has revealed.

An average audience of 1.33 million viewers watched the beloved annual special live to RTÉ One on Friday night while an additional 296,000 caught up on the RTÉ Player, RTÉ One + 1, and the Sunday repeat.

22pc of The Late Late Toy Show’s live streams came from outside Ireland, while 303,000 streams were recorded on the RTÉ Player across the weekend, with viewers tuning in from more than 139 countries including Bolivia, Jamaica, Qatar and Ukraine.

With 1.6 million viewers taking in the music of Cuckoo's Nest and laughing along with Emmie O’Neill over the weekend, The Late Late Toy Show remains the most-watched programme on Irish television.

For the third year in a row, audiences in Ireland and beyond responded with huge generosity to the annual RTÉ Toy Show Appeal.

A whopping €3.8 million was donated towards children's charities across the country, bringing the total amount of raised to a staggering €17 million since its inception in 2020.

Speaking about this year’s hugely successful Toy Show, host Ryan Tubridy said: “Friday night was a joy to be part of and that is exactly what I was, I was part of a big Toy Show family gathering.

“That is to say, people working behind the scenes and the children who participated. The reaction has been very gratifying and very heartening.

“I just got the sense that people wanted a night off from reality, they wanted a night to smile, laugh and cry together.

“People of all ages got something from this bizarre, beautiful show so I really want to say thank you to everyone for putting it together, for being part of it and for watching it. Happy Christmas to one and all.”

In addition to the huge viewership figures brought in from the Toy Show, the World Cup took the RTÉ Player to record-breaking weekly streams at 5.3 million, with 2.5 million hours of content viewed.

It beats the previous record of 2.34 million weekly streams from 2020.

Spain’s draw with Germany on Sunday evening was the most-watched World Cup match of last week, with an average of 521,000 viewers and 131,000 live streams on the RTÉ Player.

The 28 games played in the World Cup so far have generated 3.1m live streams on the RTÉ Player – an average of 112,000 live streams per game. 53pc of World Cup live streams have been on smartphones.

Jim Jennings, RTÉ Director of Content, said: “RTÉ exists to serve audiences content that informs, engages, and entertains. It is great to see audiences engage in such large numbers with a diverse range of content, from the Toy Show’s uniquely Irish heart-warming moments to the thrilling sporting action of the World Cup.

“Our shared stories are what makes us unique and RTÉ is proud to share those stories and moments with the Irish public.”

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