Eastenders and Gavin and Stacey help BBC iPlayer to best ever festive period

David Prior's picture

The Gavin and Stacey Christmas special and an eventful festive period in Albert Square helped the BBC iPlayer to its most successful fortnight ever.

A total of 203 million requests between December 20th and January 2nd was over a third up on the same period last year.

New Year’s Day was the catch-up service's best-ever day with 17.9 million requests, helped by the return of Dracula and a new series of Doctor Who.

Over the whole holiday period, the long-awaited return to Barry and Billericay in the Gavin and Stacey Christmas special was the top episode, with 4.6 million requests.

And dramatic events in Albert Square, as Keanu was kidnapped and apparently murdered by Martin Fowler, helped EastEnders dominate the iPlayer top 20 over the holidays - making up nine of the top 20 episodes on iPlayer.

There were 15.6 million requests for EastEnders over the fortnight, with the Christmas Day episode topping the pile with 2.2 million requests.

Other strong performers include the Call the Midwife Christmas special with 1.8 million requests, and the new drama A Christmas Carol with 1.6 million requests.