Save the British Comedy Awards

Sign our petition to ITV

Chortle today launches a campaign urging ITV to reinstate the British Comedy Awards.

The company has announced that for the first time in 17 years it will be ‘postponing’ broadcast of the event – but has given no indication of when it would go out.

However, it is understood to be paying £700,000 to ensure that rival channels cannot air the ceremony live.

The decision comes as media lawyers Olswang investigate irregularities in the phone vote from the 2005 ceremony.

However, other programmes where problems with phone-ins have been uncovered, such as Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway, continue to air.

Chortle has now set up an online petition urging ITV executive chairman Michael Grade to reverse his decision, which affects millions of viewers.

Editor Steve Bennett said: ‘ITV’s decision not to air the British Comedy Awards seems odd, to say the least.

‘It seems to be penalising viewers, rather than anyone responsible for the alleged problems with the phone-in.

‘At a time when ITV is trying to rebuild its reputation for comedy, dropping the flagship ceremony celebrating the best comedies on TV seems an illogical decision.’

‘The show has provided the broadcaster with good audiences and some classic moments of TV over the years, so it’s inexplicable why they should drop it.

‘Hopefully, if we can show enough weight of public support with the petition, ITV will reconsider.’

We would urge all comedy fans to sign the petition, and forward details on to all their friends, family and colleagues. We aim to send this by November 12, so don’t delay.

Sign the petition at at:

If you subscribe to bookmarking services such as Digg or social networking sites such as Facebook, you can bookmark this Chortle page using the tab towards the top right of this page to help spread the word.

This year’s ceremony, again to be hosted by Jonathan Ross, will take place on December 5.

Published: 29 Oct 2007

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