Love Island final breaks ratings record for ITV2

Love Island has broken rating records for ITV2 (James Gourley/ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

The Love Island final has broken a record for ITV2, becoming the channel’s most-watched programme ever.

An average of 3.6 million viewers tuned in to watch Dani Dyer and Jack Fincham crowned the winners, according to overnight ratings.

The extended episode of the programme, which aired from 9pm until 10.40pm, peaked with an audience of 4.1 million.

ITV said it marked the biggest audience ever for an ITV2 programme, and that it was the most-watched show in its timeslot across all channels.

This series of Love Island has averaged 2.7 million viewers in the overnight ratings, an increase of one million from last year.

According to consolidated ratings combined with TV and non-TV viewing, including those viewing via the ITV Hub, the series average is so far at five million per episode.

Dani, the daughter of EastEnders star Danny Dyer, and Fincham, a stationery salesmen, were speechless as they were revealed the winners of the fourth series by host Caroline Flack.

The couple were favourites with fans and bookies since early in the series, but had lived in a villa in Majorca for eight weeks without access to the outside world.

“I’m speechless,” said Dani, while Jack added: “I don’t know what to say.”

The smitten pair, who became girlfriend and boyfriend early in the dating show, won a cheque for £50,000.

They fended off competition from runners-up Laura Anderson and Paul Knops, while Josh Denzel and Kazimir Crossley came third and Wes Nelson and Megan Barton Hanson were in fourth place.

Love Island was last week praised by ITV’s chief executive as a TV “phenomena”, and the show was cited as an influence on the broadcaster’s increase in half-year profits.

The series, which puts hopeful singletons in a villa for weeks on end in a bid to find love, has continued to grow in popularity since it debuted in 2015.

Last year’s final, won by Kem Cetinay and Amber Davies, was watched by an average of 2.6 million.

The previous series’ finale, which saw Cara De La Hoyde and Nathan Massey named the winners, averaged 1.4 million viewers.

The equivalent episode in the first series in 2015, won by Jessica Hayes and Max Morley, drew an average of 800,000 viewers.

Paul Mortimer, ITV’s head of digital channels and acquisitions, said: “Love Island was once again the must-see show of the summer.

“At ITV2, we were thrilled with the level of younger viewer engagement to the extent that it broke all our previous audience records and is now firmly established as the biggest ever series in the multi-channel space.

“The main show, The Hot List and Aftersun have all helped propel ITV2 towards what will undoubtedly be its most successful year so far.”