The second episode of EastEnders drew almost 14 million viewers on Christmas night, just edging out the Doctor Who Christmas special as the most popular programme.

It was a general ratings coup for BBC One, with the channel taking eight out of the top 10 rating Christmas Day programmes.

According to BARB, Coronation Street was ITV1’s sole Top 10 entry, with a peak of 9.6m, scheduled against Strictly Come Dancing.

EastEnders and Coronation Street both featured key plotline revelations, with the long-running Max and Stacey affair finally being exposed in Albert Square, while Kevin Webster attacked John Stape after the teacher’s affair with Rosie was revealed.

BBC1 acting controller Roly Keating said: “It’s heartening to see that the great tradition of Christmas family viewing seems to be alive and well.

“We were delighted that audiences found so much to enjoy in our line-up of programmes on BBC1.

“From the compelling drama of EastEnders to a spectacular Doctor Who and the welcome return of To The Manor Born, this was a Christmas when some of the nation’s favourite performers and writers did us all proud.”

The combined peak share of audience for BBC1 and BBC2 was 51.7 per cent this year, up from 44.4 per cent last year.

CHRISTMAS DAY TV RATINGS


1 EastEnders part two (13.9m)


2 Dr Who (13.8m)


3 EastEnders part one (11.8m)


4= To The Manor Born (10.1m)


4= Shrek 2 (10.1m)


4= BBC News at 1800 (10.1m)


7 Strictly Come Dancing Special (9.9m)


8. Coronation Street (9.6m)
9 Finding Nemo (8.3m)


10. The Queen’s Christmas Message (7.5m*)


* BBC One and ITV1 combined