Neighbours officially cancelled after 37 years: 'We are so sorry'

·3-min read

Despite Neighbours stars and fans alike rallying to try and save the long-running Australian soap, the show has officially been cancelled.

After 37 years and 9000 episodes, it has been confirmed that Neighbours will cease production in June after the Network was unable to secure alternative funding following the axing of the series by UK’s Channel 5.

Neighbours cancelled
Australian soap opera Neighbours is coming to an end after nearly 37 years. Photo: Channel 10

"We are so sorry to say that after nearly 37 years and almost 9000 episodes broadcast we have to confirm that Neighbours will cease production in June," a statement shared to the show's Instagram page read on Thursday.

"Following the loss of our key broadcast partner in the UK and despite an extensive search for alternative funding, we simply have no option but to rest the show.

"To our amazing, loyal fans, we know this is a huge disappointment, as it is to all of us on the team. We thank you for all your messages and support and promise to end the show on an incredible high.

"From here on, we are celebrating Neighbours."

Not only had Channel 5 provided a steady audience for Neighbours abroad, with one million viewers reportedly tuning in across two daily showings in the UK, but it was the show's biggest source of funding in recent years.

neighbours set
The cancellation comes after a UK broadcaster dropped the show. Photo: Instagram/alanfletcher

Fans of the series had launched an online petition to try and save the show from being axed.

The petition gained close to 64,000 signatures, with the description referring to the soap as “a staple on UK screens” that has been “watched by generations”.

Neighbours is more than just a TV show - it is a source of comfort and entertainment for generations of fans who have watched it for decades,” the statement read.

“It is one of the most loved TV shows in the UK and brings lots of viewers from all backgrounds to Channel 5's catalogue of channels. Even Adele is a fan. Channel 5 - we plead with you - please find a way to keep Neighbours on air.”

But that was not enough to save the show, with several people on Twitter sharing their sadness.

"Gutted about this. A daily part of my childhood. In fact I had a 'Neighbours' themed wedding!" one person said on Twitter.

Another person said they used to watch Neighbours as a kid and they vowed to move to Australia from London when they finished school. They did and have been in Australia for 20 years now.

Australian soap opera Neighbours
Australian soap opera Neighbours has aired for 37 years. Photo: Channel 10

"Very sad and annoyed with Channel Five in the UK," one person wrote on Instagram.

"I wish I wasn’t crying, but I am. It is such an institution and brings so much joy to all of us," another echoed.

On Twitter, Alan Fletcher who plays Dr Karl Kennedy on the show thanked broadcast partners and the fans.

"I want to express my deepest gratitude to the millions of fans all who have supported us for 37 years," he said.

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