Steph’s Packed Lunch axed after three years as channel shares difficult decision

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    Steph's Packed Lunch has been axed later this year when the contract ends in December 2023.

    The daytime TV show was launched in March 2020 but will sadly be removed from air after just over three years. A statement from Channel 4 confirmed they had made the decision to cut the show on Thursday afternoon.

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    The broadcaster said: "With audience habits changing quicker than ever, we have to make difficult decisions about which programmes to invest in to best drive our digital-first strategy." They added that they made the decision to not recommission the show when the contract ends in December.

    "We remain as committed as ever to our mission to help level up the TV industry outside London and to our 50% origination out-of-London target," they added. It was confirmed that the budget committed to the show would be reinvested into other nations and regions productions.

    They added: "We will continue to build on the legacy of the show. Evolving what we do in line with our digital ambitions whilst continuing to reflect the lives of, and give a voice to, all our audiences across the UK and hope to work with Steph on other projects soon."

    The show is hosted by Steph McGovern and is broadcast from Leeds Dock as part of the channel's bid to work with more shows outside of London. The live episode featured interviews, food, news and advice.

    A live audience and regular guests were also a key part of the show. After launching as The Steph Show in March 2020, it had to be broadcast from Steph's house due to the Covid-19 pandemic and was briefly removed from air.

    When it returned that summer, it had been renamed as Steph's Packed Lunch. The TV show was recommissioned last year and a commitment was submitted for 2022 and 2023.

    Last year it saw an increase on viewing figures and Steph had quickly become very popular with the audience. She previously told Radio Times that she knew daytime telly is tough to keep going though.

    She said: "It was a big risk, but I'm grateful Channel 4 gave us time to work on it. Now we're up there with amazing shows." At the time of the nomination, Steph admitted she hadn't seen it coming, but was thrilled about the news.

    In the time since its been on air, Steph's Packed Lunch has had two award nominations, one at the 2022 Royal Television Society and one at the BAFTAs.

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