Dave and Gold finally return to Virgin TV after deal struck with UKTV

UKTV channels including Dave and Gold will be restored to Virgin Media customers, it has been announced.

Saturday, 11th August 2018, 11:39 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th September 2018, 8:21 pm
Dave is returning to Virgin TV. Picture: Ellis O'Brien/ BBC Worldwide

It comes after a long-term agreement was struck following a row over fees.

UKTV had previously said demands for price cuts meant it could not continue its partnership with the television provider.

Virgin customers also lost channels including W, Alibi, Drama, Really, Yesterday, Eden, Home and Good Food during the dispute.

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The new deal will give Virgin TV customers five times more on-demand programming than before, Virgin said, and they will keep the channels that were added to their bundle when UKTV's channels were removed in July.

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Virgin TV Mix customers will now also receive Dave HD and Gold HD for the first time.

David Bouchier, chief digital entertainment officer at Virgin Media, said: '˜Reaching this agreement reaffirms our longstanding partnership with UKTV and is fantastic news for our customers.

'˜They can enjoy channels like Dave and Gold once again, including in HD, and also get more UKTV on-demand programming than ever before. On top of this, the channels we've recently added to Virgin TV will remain.

'˜We are sorry for what we know has been a frustrating time for our customers, but are pleased that our TV bundles are now even bigger.

'˜Our unwavering commitment to investing in incredible programming remains.'

Simon Michaelides, chief commercial officer at UKTV, added: '˜Viewers are at the heart of UKTV and we want to thank them for all of their support.

'˜We know this has created real disruption for some of our viewers and we're so sorry for this, but we are thrilled to be back, broadcasting our channels and shows to customers of Virgin Media once more.'

A statement to customers on UKTV's Twitter page said: '˜For the past three weeks we've read thousands of viewers' messages and replied to as many as we could.

'˜Overwhelmingly, we heard that viewers wanted UKTV and Virgin Media to agree a deal that would return our channels as quickly as we could.

'˜The most important people are the millions of loyal viewers who love our channels and enjoy our shows, and we're so sorry it's taken both companies this long, and has caused disruption to so many people.

'˜No broadcaster wants to be off air so we're thrilled to be returning to Virgin Media and would like to thank everyone who has supported us.

'˜Thank you also to Virgin Media with whom we've agreed to kiss and make-up.'