An average of 8.7 million viewers watched as Broadchurch series three concluded with the revelation of Trish Winterman's rapist

Broadchurch ended on a record high as its last ever episode scored its biggest audience ever.

An average of 8.7 million viewers tuned in to watch as the identity of the rapist of Trish Winterman (Julie Hesmondhalgh)  was revealed to be 16-year-old Michael Lucas (Deon Lee-Williams) in the shocking finale.

The average audience share for the hit ITV drama was 36 per cent, and the episode peaked at 9.3 million viewers.

Monday night’s instalment, the eighth in the nail-biting series, has now become the most-watched Broadchurch episode ever, beating the previous high of 8.6 million for the last episode of series one in 2013.

Not only was the conclusion a ratings success, but the entire third series of the David Tennant and Olivia Colman-fronted drama effort has also been named the most successful of all.

The series, which returned to screens in February, averaged 7.4 million viewers per episode in the overnight ratings.

The data is comprised of overnight numbers and includes those who watched Broadchurch an hour later on ITV+1.

 

Consolidated ratings for the series so far, in which numbers are tallied up seven days later to include those watching on catch-up, have shown an increase of more than three million per episode.

The average viewers per episode according to the consolidated data has been 10.6 million across series three.

Broadchurch’s finale is now ITV’s most-watched programme of 2017, drawing level with Britain’s Got Talent, which launched on Saturday with 8.7 million viewers.