Strictly still beating The X Factor

Burnham and Highbridge Weekly News: Denise Van Outen again topped the leaders board on Strictly Denise Van Outen again topped the leaders board on Strictly

Strictly Come Dancing continues to thrash The X Factor in the ratings, with in excess of two million more viewers on Saturday night.

The BBC1 dance show landed an average audience of 10.3 million - the second highest of this series - who saw Denise Van Outen once more top the judges' leader board with her American Smooth.

ITV1's singing contest pulled in an average 8.2 million - even including viewers of its +1 catch-up channel - continuing its lacklustre ratings for this year.

The programme is down two million viewers on last year's contest at this stage. And there is a massive fall when compared with ratings for 2010, with the show dropping by more than five million.

The equivalent X Factor edition two years ago - show boss Simon Cowell's last series on screen - landed an average audience of 13.6 million viewers.

Ratings have slumped since Cowell exited the UK programme to concentrate on his US version.

Last week saw X Factor favourite Ella Henderson axed from the programme when she drew the lowest number of viewer votes.

Last week it emerged that the programme backed off a direct challenge for the Christmas number one by releasing the winner's single a week earlier than normal. Instead it will come out on December 9, following the final that night.

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