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Steph’s Packed Lunch AXED after three years amid claims Channel 4 is battling to cut costs – while host is now ‘in the running’ for Holly Willoughby’s This Morning job


Steph’s Packed Lunch has been axed after just three years, the broadcaster has announced.

The Channel 4 show, hosted by Steph McGovern, 41, will come to an end in December.

A statement said: ‘With audience habits changing quicker than ever, we have to make difficult decisions about which programmes to invest in to best drive our digital-first strategy and we have decided not to recommission Steph’s Packed Lunch when its existing production contract ends in December 2023.

‘We remain as committed as ever to our mission to help level up the TV industry outside London and to our 50% origination out-of-London target. 

‘We will be reinvesting the budget previously committed to Steph’s Packed Lunch into other nations and regions productions.’

Axed: Steph's Packed Lunch has been axed after just three years, the broadcaster has announced (Host Steph McGovern pictured)

Axed: Steph’s Packed Lunch has been axed after just three years, the broadcaster has announced (Host Steph McGovern pictured)

Career: Last month ITV's This Morning poached Channel 4's exec producer Vivek Sharmar, who is reportedly 'a huge champion' of Steph - meaning the star is now in the running to take over from Holly Willoughby

Career: Last month ITV’s This Morning poached Channel 4’s exec producer Vivek Sharmar, who is reportedly ‘a huge champion’ of Steph – meaning the star is now in the running to take over from Holly Willoughby

Cast and crew have been informed that the last show will air in December.

The show, which debuted in 2020 and is broadcast from Leeds Dock, is live and features items including showbiz interviews and news segments.

Last month ITV’s This Morning poached Channel 4’s exec producer Vivek Sharmar, who worked alongside Steph.

Vivek is reportedly ‘a huge champion’ of Steph – meaning the star is now in the running to take over from Holly Willoughby.

When asked by The Sun at the Attitude awards last week about whether she would be interested in a move, Steph replied: ‘I’m very happy at Channel 4 doing Steph’s Packed Lunch but never say never.’

The axe comes amid a slew of cancellations with the broadcaster reportedly battling to cut costs amid financial challenges.

Controversial cult late-night show Naked Attraction, big-money celebrity flop Scared Of The Dark and groundbreaking medical documentary Rescue: Extreme Medics, based in Scotland, have all been canned.

A source said that the channel believes it is better to cut its losses.

But staff blame Chief Content Officer, Ian Katz, for wasting money on expensive but little-watched shows such as reality series Rise And Fall, which is understood to have cost the channel £14million – money which could not be justified because of its low ratings.

One insider said: ‘Everyone is calling it a Channel 4 bloodbath. At first everyone was in total shock when [earlier reality show] Four Weddings was cancelled.

A statement from Channel 4 said: 'With audience habits changing quicker than ever, we have to make difficult decisions about which programmes to invest in to best drive our digital-first strategy and we have decided not to recommission Steph's Packed Lunch'

A statement from Channel 4 said: ‘With audience habits changing quicker than ever, we have to make difficult decisions about which programmes to invest in to best drive our digital-first strategy and we have decided not to recommission Steph’s Packed Lunch’

It's over: The show, which debuted in 2020 and is broadcast from Leeds Dock, is live and features items including showbiz interviews and news segments

It’s over: The show, which debuted in 2020 and is broadcast from Leeds Dock, is live and features items including showbiz interviews and news segments

‘It’s almost unheard of that a show that is going really well is decommissioned, but as news started to spread, other shows were falling down too.

‘They were told that Ian Katz had been looking at the channel’s entire output, and they were sorry but it had to happen because there was no money.

‘The casting team were already in place to start on Naked Attraction and were all told they were no longer needed as they were not making another series.

‘They tried to lessen the blow to the show’s freelance crew by saying they hope to make another series in December, but that doesn’t help them now.’

Cancelled: The alleged axe comes amid a slew of cancellations of big shows such as Naked Attraction with Channel 4 reportedly battling to cut costs amid financial challenges

Cancelled: The alleged axe comes amid a slew of cancellations of big shows such as Naked Attraction with Channel 4 reportedly battling to cut costs amid financial challenges



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