The one-hour show made its debut at 8pm and drew an average audience of 6.5 million viewers and a 30.4% share of viewing from 8pm to 9.15pm.
This performance makes it Channel 4’s biggest overnight audience in five years since The Paralympic Games Opening Ceremony in August 2012, which recorded 8.3 million viewers.
The broadcaster said last night’s episode was the most popular programme in the 8pm-9.15pm slot for all viewers, as well as Channel 4’s key demographics of 16-34 year olds and ABC1s.
Channel 4 chief creative officer Jay Hunt said: “’The Great British Bake Off’ audience last night proves it’s still one of the country’s favourite shows.
“I’m delighted that millions watched the new team put 12 magnificent bakers through their paces. It’s the largest share of young audiences we’ve had for a show for over a decade.” The episode had the biggest peak time share for viewers aged 16-34 in 10 years, since reality show ‘Big Brother’.
The new team comprises established judge Paul Hollywood, new judge Prue Leith, and new presenting duo Sandi Toksvig and Noel Fielding.
The theme of last night’s episode was Cake Week. The theme of episode two, which airs next Tuesday (September 5) at 8pm, is Biscuit Week.
l-r: Paul Hollywood, Sandi Toksvig, Noel Fielding and Prue Leith