Neighbours fans have started a campaign to save the Australian soap after it was announced Channel 5 has made a decision to stop airing the long-running drama serial, with many convinced ITV could save the day.
The news first emerged with reports that a source had revealed the show's Ramsay Street residents would be seen for the last time.
And amid claims that the Melbourne-based cast and crew hadn't yet been told the heartbreaking news, Channel 5 decided to clarify the rumours.
While in Australia, the soap is made by Fremantle media and airs on Channel 10, its partnership with a UK channel – Channel 5 for the last decade – is vital to its survival.
Viewers have been filling up their Twitter feeds with messages begging for ITV to take over.
"Hello, @ITV, be our saviour. Daytime on ITV. Evening repeat on ITV2," one person wrote.
Another fan begged: "Come on @ITV!! #Neighbours would be a fantastic early evening lead in for your new schedule for Emmerdale and Corrie #SaveNeighbours."
"#Neighbours means so much to so many people and again does better in the ratings than other programmes, so cancelling it needs to be reconsidered by @channel5_tv or another network like @ITV should pick it up. #SaveNeighbours," a third viewer insisted.
While a fourth commenter simply wrote: "Oh hey, @itv let’s chat. #SaveNeighbours #Neighbours."
"Come on @ITV #SaveNeighbours #Neighbours," another person shared, followed by: "
@ITV #Neighbours would be a great addition to your network don’t you think!? #SaveNeighbours."
A Channel 5 spokesperson confirmed in a statement why they'd decided to change up their schedule for 2022.
“Neighbours will no longer air on Channel 5 beyond this summer," they said. "It has been a much-loved part of our schedule for more than a decade, and we'd like to thank the cast, Fremantle and all of the production team for their fantastic work on this iconic series.
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“We'd also of course like to thank the fans for their loyal support of Neighbours across the years," the statement continued.
“We recognise that there will be disappointment about this decision, however our current focus is on increasing our investment in original UK drama, which has strong appeal for our viewers.”
While Australian broadcaster Network 10 have shared their determination to try and find a new UK partner for Neighbours and denied that filming has been halted with the news, staple actors on the programme have been reportedly voicing their concern behind the scenes.
Neighbours was first broadcast in Australia in 1985 and launched on BBC One a year later, rapidly becoming a fan-favourite with the UK viewership.
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