‘A clear and clever scheduling strategy linked days of the week to different topics’

Matt Baker: Our Farm in the Dales was the jewel in More 4’s crown in 2021 and, with a peak audience of 1.8 million, the biggest factual programme of the year on any digital channel. It was also the biggest programme in More 4’s 16-year history and, as part of a large, strong slate of new commissions, helped the channel achieve its biggest ever 9pm share.

After coming out of a period of lockdown, More 4 decided to focus on the beauty and brilliance of Great Britain, with programmes including Britain’s Most Beautiful Landscapes and Secrets of the Royal Gardens. These shows ensured the channel attracted its target ABC1 audience, and boosted More 4 to the top digital channel in daytime among the upmarket demographic.

Other success stories for the demographic included The Great British Dig, Car SOS, £1m Restoration: Historic House Rescue, My Floating Home and Great British Home Restoration.

More 4 cemented its reputation as the place to find national treasures, with Prue Leith showcasing her Great Garden Plot, Gyles Brandreth and Sheila Hancock taking the audience on some Great Canal Journeys and Mariella Frostrup, Sayeeda Warsi, Martin Clunes and Charlie Luxton also appearing on the channel.

A clear and clever scheduling strategy linked days of the week to different topics, with Sundays dedicated to blue-light docs, Wednesdays highlighting national treasure-fronted shows and Fridays homing foreign dramas through the Walter Presents strand.


Real Stories


Focusing on premier documentaries, Real Stories added 200 full-length films to its YouTube channel in 2021, along with hundreds more videos on Facebook, Instagram and TikTok. In April 2021, it launched its second Real Stories podcast – Real Stories Tapes: True Crime – which racked up more than 100,000 listens. The platform also teamed up with All3Media-owned Bullion Productions for the release of City of Hope, to coincide with the COP23 summit. 

Sky Documentaries

Sky Docs

Sky Documentaries launched in May 2020, but 2021 was the year when the channel really came into its own, with the announcement of a wide slate of original feature-length documentaries. In collaboration with Sky Sports, an array of programming centred around sport featured on the channel, including Micah Richards: Tackling Racism, which won the Sport Documentrary of the Year (Up to 60 Minutes) category at last year’s Broadcast Sport Awards. 

Sky History

Sky History

The critically acclaimed Royal Bastards, Hitler’s Secret Sex Life and WW2 Mystery: Foo Fighters were some of the key shows that ensured Sky History continued to delight viewers with a raft of original, UK-produced content in 2021. Commissions such as UFO Conspiracies with Craig Charles and Sarah Cruddas contributed to a hugely successful Mystery Season, with share up 8% year on year in January. 



Covering a broad spectrum of subjects and genres, Yesterday is home to some high-performing shows such as Bangers and Cash and Secrets of the London Underground. UKTV originals made up the channel’s top five shows in 2021 and three Yesterday originals were among the top 10 performing titles on UKTV last year.