News Archive: August 2001

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Crossroads awarded four-star rating

20-08-2001

Daily Mail

 

TV's Crossroads hotel has been given the seal of approval by tourism chiefs with a four-star rating, it was announced today.

Producers of the show wanted to enhance realism on the show and contacted the English Tourism Council to get hold of a sign to display the quality ranking.

 

And so impressed were ETC bosses by standards at the fictional establishment in the revived show that they decided to award it a plaque.

 

The hotel replaced the old Crossroads Motel, which disappeared when the series was axed back in 1987.

But with the relaunch of the show by Carlton TV in March this year, a new place was created for the weekday soap.

Programme-makers actually consulted the ETC when designing the new-look hotel and used the four-star standards as a blueprint for the facilities - just one below the rank expected of a luxury hotel.

 

Sherrie Hewson, who plays snooty receptionist Virginia Raven, said: "It's nice to see the hotel get the official seal of approval as the old motel always looked a bit tatty.

 

"We've gone up in the world these days - we even change the sheets more than once a week."

David Stanbridge, head of Quality Standards at the English Tourism Council, said: "Crossroads was a big influence on my decision to pursue a career in the hospitality industry and coming from Nottingham, where Crossroads is filmed, I was really pleased when they got in touch.

 

"Although the Crossroads hotel is make-believe, if you're claiming to be of four-star quality it's important to get as close as you can to the real thing."

 

Assessors visit thousands of establishments around the country to check that standards are being maintained or to see if owners have sufficiently improved standards to increase their quality rating.

 

 

 

 

 

Crossroads awarded four-star hotel rating

20-08-2001

Ananova

 

TV's Crossroads hotel has been given the seal of approval by tourism chiefs with a four-star rating. Producers of the show wanting to enhance it's realism contacted the English Tourism Council to get hold of a sign to display the quality ranking. ETC bosses were so impressed by standards at the fictional hotel they award it a plaque.

 

The hotel replaced the old Crossroads Motel, which disappeared when the series was axed back in 1987. But with the relaunch of the show by Carlton TV in March this year, a new place was created for the weekday soap.

Programme-makers actually consulted the ETC when designing the new-look hotel and used the four-star standards as a blueprint for the facilities - just one below the rank expected of a luxury hotel.

 

Sherrie Hewson, who plays snooty receptionist Virginia Raven, said: "It's nice to see the hotel get the official seal of approval as the old motel always looked a bit tatty. We've gone up in the world these days - we even change the sheets more than once a week."

 

David Stanbridge, head of Quality Standards at the English Tourism Council, said: "Crossroads was a big influence on my decision to pursue a career in the hospitality industry and coming from Nottingham, where Crossroads is filmed, I was really pleased when they got in touch. Although the Crossroads hotel is make-believe, if you're claiming to be of four-star quality it's important to get as close as you can to the real thing."

 

 

 

 

Crossroads to lose one episode per week

30-08-2001

produxion.com

 

ITV is cutting back its much-hyped daytime soap Crossroads from five episodes a week to four, following disappointing ratings, writes Steve Aston.

 

From 10 September the soap's Friday episode will be axed and the remaining weekday episodes will move from 13.30 to the new time of 14.05. ITV will now run networked programming either side of the soap including a live quiz from Granada, The Biggest Game in Town. Regional programmes will be shifted as a result with an hour of regional output shown from 14.00 on Fridays.

 

ITV controller of daytime Maureen Duffy claimed the move was designed to lift audience figures in the afternoon. 'While ITV daytime remains the first choice for viewers in the morning with Trisha and This Morning we need to grow our audience in the afternoons,' she said.

 

One Carlton insider said: 'This is about putting Crossroads in a better slot.' The source added that the move was temporary 'and it will probably last until Christmas'. Carlton will continue its production schedule of five episodes a week.

The move will be embarrassing for ITV director of channels David Liddiment who chose the revamped soap from a number of other brand-new propositions from leading drama producers.

 

Although ratings for the show have fallen short of expectations they have gradually increased over the past four months.

 

 

 

 

Crossroads cut back

30-08-2001

Digital Spy

 

Revived soap Crossroads has been cut back to four episodes a week, it was announced today.
The last Friday edition will air on September 7, after which the soap will run from Monday through Thursday only, at the later times of 14.05 and 17.30.


The move is the first sign that ITV1 is concerned about ratings for the show, which pull an average of just 3.5m a day.
"Establishing a soap is a long-term game. We're very happy with the way Crossroads is performing," said a spokeswoman for the network. "The decision was about strengthening the afternoon schedule, not about Crossroads."


A new gameshow, The Biggest Game in Town will air weekday afternoons at 13.35, which bosses hope will provide strong inheritance for the early edition of the soap.


On Fridays at 14.05, regional programming will air for an hour.


"We wanted to create a consistent afternoon schedule," the spokeswoman continued. "Maureen Duffy wanted to create a consistent run of regional programming."

 

 

 

 

ITV cuts back Crossroads 

30-08-2001

Media Guardian

 

ITV has reduced the five-day run of the new-look Crossroads series to four days a week as the soap struggles to make its mark.

 

Just five months after launch, the network has decided to dispense with the Friday edition and reschedule the lunchtime and afternoon shows.

 

There will be just two more Friday editions of the soap before it disappears. The four other weekday editions will be pushed back half-an-hour to 2.05pm and 5.30pm respectively.

 

The move is the first public sign that the broadcaster's plans for the programme have not worked out.

The network had high hopes when it decided to revive the soap, which ran for 23 years until it was axed in 1988.

The revival was one of Lord Alli's last big ideas before he quit Carlton TV as head of production.

The new Crossroads bears only a passing resemblance to the original although when it launched there was much fanfare about a cast that included Jane Rossington, the actress who opened the first episode in 1964.

But with a combined average viewing figure of 3.5m for its two daily showings, the soap has failed to attract the sort of following of its Aussie predecessor, Home and Away, which drew up to 8m.

 

ITV said today it was standing full-square behind the soap, declaring that Crossroads needed time to establish itself in viewers' affections.

 

"Establishing a soap is a long-term game. We're very happy with the way Crossroads is performing," said a spokeswoman.

Launching to mixed reviews, Crossroads has failed to win over the critics, with the News of the World's Ally Ross describing it recently as "death in the afternoon".

 

An ITV spokeswoman said the move "was about strengthening the afternoon schedule, not about Crossroads".

A new daily game show, the Biggest Game in Town, will air in the 1.35pm slot previously occupied by Crossroads and, if successful, will boost audiences for the soap, which will follow immediately in the schedules.

The quiz show will offer viewers at home and at work a "big cash prize" ranging from "a hundred to several thousand pounds" every lunchtime.

 

On Fridays the 2.05-3.05pm slot will be dedicated to regional programmes.

"We wanted to create a consistent afternoon schedule," the spokeswoman said. "Maureen Duffy [ITV's daytime programming chief] wanted to create a consistent run of regional programming."

 

She pointed out that the soap, originally commissioned by ITV network until March 2002, had been recommissioned for a further four months.

 

A spokesman for Carlton also denied the changes represented a loss of faith in Crossroads

 

 

 

 

ITVís Crossroads finds Fridays fully booked

31-08-2001

The Independent

 

ITV'S TROUBLED soap Crossroads has been cut from five episodes a week to four in a reflection of the strong competition faced by the tale of an everyday West Midlands motel.

 

The Friday afternoon edition is to be replaced by a live interactive game show, called The Biggest Game in Town, which will also become a staple of lunchtime viewing, shunting Crossroads to a slightly later time-slot.

An ITV spokeswoman insisted the move was not because Crossroads was failing to win audiences, even though its combined lunchtime and tea-time figure of 3.5 million makes it nowhere near as popular as its predecessor, Home and Away, now on Channel 5.

 

The revival of Crossroads, 13 years after it was axed following a 23- year run, was one of the last brainchilds of Lord Alli before he left Carlton Television. Despite the disappointing audiences, it has just been re-commissioned for a further four months.

 

Maureen Duffy, ITV's controller of daytime television, said she was making the changes because the channel needed to increase its afternoon audience to match its popularity before noon.

 

 

 

 

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