Channel 5 (British TV channel)

Channel 5 is a British free-to-air television network launched in 1997. It is the fifth national terrestrial channel in the United Kingdom and is owned by Channel 5 Broadcasting Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of American media conglomerate ViacomCBS, which is grouped under ViacomCBS Networks UK & Australia division.

Channel 5
CountryUnited Kingdom
Broadcast areaUnited Kingdom
Isle of Man
Channel Islands
Language(s)English language
Picture formatHDTV 1080i
(downscaled to 576i for the SD feed)
Timeshift serviceChannel 5 +1
Channel 5 +24 (later rebranded to My5, now 5Select)
OwnerViacomCBS Networks UK & Australia
ParentChannel 5 Broadcasting Limited[1]
Sister channels
Launched30 March 1997; 24 years ago (1997-03-30)
Former namesFive (2002–2011)
FreeviewChannel 5 (SD)
Channel 45 (+1)
Channel 105 (HD)
Virgin MediaChannel 105 (HD)
Channel 154 (SD)
Channel 155 (+1)
UPC SwitzerlandChannel 215 (SD)
CitycableChannel 417 (SD)
FreesatChannel 105 (HD)
Channel 128 (+1)
Channel 105 (HD)
Channel 205 (+1)
Channel 805 (SD)
Astra 2G10964 H 22000 5/6
10964 H 22000 5/6 (+1)
10964 H 22000 5/6 (HD)
TéléSATChannel 806 (HD)
Channel 833 (+1)
FL1 (Liechtenstein)Channel 120
Streaming media
TVPlayerWatch live
Sky GoWatch live
Virgin TV GoWatch live
Pluto TVWatch live

The station was branded as Five between 16 September 2002 and 13 February 2011, when it was owned by the RTL Group. Richard Desmond purchased the station from RTL on 23 July 2010, announcing plans to invest more money in programming and return to the name Channel 5 with immediate effect, and it was relaunched on 14 February 2011.[2][3][4] On 1 May 2014 the channel was acquired by Viacom (now ViacomCBS) for £450 million (US$759 million).[5]

Channel 5 is a general entertainment channel that shows both internally commissioned programmes such as Fifth Gear, The Gadget Show, The Hotel Inspector, and Can't Pay? We'll Take It Away! and foreign programmes. The station has been very successful with imports from the United States in particular, including the CSI franchise, the NCIS franchise, the first three series in the Law & Order franchise, Power Rangers, The Mentalist, Body of Proof, Once Upon a Time, Dallas, Under the Dome and sitcom Friends (also on Comedy Central UK).[6][7][8][9][10][11]