ITV’s current affairs TV programme Tonight celebrates its 20th anniversary by unrolling the red carpet at The Lowry for a night of talks and toasts.

Last Thursday guests of the event had the chance to take a walk on the red carpet under the spotlight and feel like celebrities. ITV’s Tonight show has been running on British television since 1999. Those invited looked over the past 20 years with hosts Julie Etchingham and Sir Trevor McDonald. ITV’s director of news Michael Jermey held a welcome address. Shortly after people joined Tonight’s hosts for an “in conversation” which was followed by an audience Q and A.

On the far side of the red path a selection of fine wine and drinks welcomed the thirsty guests.

Glasses clinked together in a toast honouring the long successful run of the show. An assortment of small sweets and bites were also offered to accompany the drinks given. A joyful and celebratory atmosphere filled the air while newcomers constantly poured in to indulged in it.

First women ever titled “Presenter of the Year” Julie Etchingham and knighted journalist Sir Trevor McDonald reflected on the failures and successes in the past years. Together they have made Tonight the most watched current affairs show on British television. It has seen a steady audience growth up until its two-decade milestone. ITV Controller of Current Affairs, Tom Giles, said: “Julie and the Tonight teams at Shiver and ITV News have continued with the trusted formula of knowing their audiences and of informing, challenging and surprising viewers while never talking down to them.”

“We’re very proud at ITV to be commissioning a 20th year of Tonight. It’s still the most watched weekly Current Affairs show on network TV and, unlike its rivals, has been steadily building share in the last couple of years.”

The current 30 new episodes of Tonight have been running since the 3rd of January and are produced by Shiver, an award-winning ITV Studios label. Shiver welcomed Laura Caveney-Morgan on board, the producer of BBC’s Save My Holiday and CBBC’s Hero Squad, as the series editor. The show is based at the label’s MediaCityUK base in Salford.

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