UKTV is taking its entertainment channel W free-to-air and making it available on its video on demand service UKTV Play.

On 28th March the channel will sit in Freeview slot 25.

UKTV Originals include new upcoming shows Alex Jones: Making Babies, Rochelle Humes: Interior Designer in the Making, Nurses on the Ward and Dating With My Mates, alongside new series of returners Stacey Dooley Sleeps Over, MasterChef USA, Australia and Canada, and Inside the Ambulance.

W’s channel director, Adam Collings, said, “We are thoroughly delighted to be bringing W’s brilliant original content featuring some of the best-known talent in the UK alongside heroes of everyday society, to a much wider audience wherever they want to watch or stream. We’re looking forward to showcasing the genuine human moments embodying W’s new mantra ‘Life Unfiltered’ and can’t wait to share W’s rich mix of shows filled with joy, tears and laughter with our new a free-to-air audience.”

Steve North, UKTV’s genre general manager for comedy and entertainment, said, “We are confident that we’ve spotted a gap in the free-to-air market for W to fill; providing premium entertainment for people with busy lives who want to engage with shows that shine a spotlight on personal stories from everyday lives. W’s launch on UKTV’s direct-to-consumer VOD service, UKTV Play, will also mean that shows are more accessible than ever.”

Coinciding with the switch to free-to-air, W is rebranding and repositioning itself as the “home of genuine human moments”, leading with the tagline, “Life Unfiltered” to connect with its female skewing 25-44 target audience. Designed by in-house agency, UKTV Creative, W’s new creative look and feel “embodies a down-to-earth and unfiltered feel and the suite of new creative assets celebrate W’s inspiring programming and real-life moments in all their imperfect and unique glory.”

On launch, full closed captions will be available on 100% of W programming via Freeview and UKTV Play.

Televisual’s recent interview with UKTV’s Deputy Director of Commissioning and Head of Factual and Factual Entertainment, Hilary Rosen can be viewed here

Jon Creamer

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