Since its launch on Freeview and on Virgin Media in 2011, BBC ALBA is now serving an audience of around half a million viewers a week,
Today, 29th June, MG ALBA, the Gaelic Media Service, published its Annual Report for the financial year 2011-12., highlighting the following successes:
- four out of five Gaelic speakers are watching BBC ALBA every week
- the average 15+ minute weekly reach for BBC ALBA for the year was 436,000, compared with 180,000 the previous year
- the anytime average weekly reach was 515,000, compared with 220,000 the previous year
- viewing of BBC ALBA programmes on the iPlayer doubled over the course of the year, rising from 1.56 million viewings the previous year to 2.2 million viewings
- in the course of the year, MG ALBA funded 384 hours of content for BBC ALBA, with 72% (target 50%) of the programme expenditure being with eighteen (18) independent production companies
- LearnGaelic.net, an interactive website that provides a one-stop-shop for anyone interested in learning Gaelic, was launched in October 2011. This online resource was created in partnership with the BBC, Bòrd na Gàidhlig, the Board of Celtic Studies and Sabhal Mòr Ostaig with help from the Scottish Government
- MG ALBA celebrated the success of its FilmG project that is growing year upon year, with 76 new films submitted to the competition. Over 200 short films made by individuals, schools and communities can be viewed here at the FilmG website.
Alasdair Morrison, Chairman of MG ALBA, says: ‘Not only has BBC ALBA made an important contribution to broadcasting in Scotland over the past year, but it has also strengthened the profile and use of the Gaelic language.
‘Our Annual Report confirms that a growing audience is watching and enjoying Gaelic programmes. Broadcasting on Freeview and Cable, coupled with Satellite and iPlayer, enables all households in Scotland and beyond to access the diverse range of high quality programmes that BBC ALBA has to offer.
‘Our focus now is to continue to build on the channel’s current success to maintain a high level of viewers who are enjoying the premier package of home-grown productions and unique Scottish content – with music, sport and documentaries being the most popular genres on the channel.
‘It is with optimism that MG ALBA and our colleagues at the BBC can look forward to a new era for BBC ALBA, as a service that is now established as an important part of the nation’s cultural life. I wish Maggie Cunningham, my successor, continued success throughout her term as Chairperson of MG ALBA.’