Frustrated Bake Off fans turn off as Channel 4 still unable to include subtitles due to ongoing technical issues

Bake Off aired without subtitles once again (Picture: Channel 4)

Channel 4 viewers were left disappointed on Tuesday night when subtitles were missing from The Great British Bake Off for the third week in a row.

Bake Off is one of the broadcaster’s biggest hits since it started airing the series in 2016.

However, in recent weeks, Channel 4 has faced a crisis after TV company Red Bee Media, which handles playout services and broadcasting technology, was involved in a fire scare.

Since then, subtitles, audio description and sign language on programmes have been missing from the broadcaster, meaning hearing and visually impaired viewers are among those who have struggled to enjoy the show.

Fans once again made clear their frustrations during the latest episode of the baking bonanza.

Taking to Twitter, multiple viewers asked Channel 4 when they might expect subtitles to return, with it being the third week of the competition series without their inclusion.

Maggie was eliminated on Tuesday night’s show (Picture: Mark Bourdillon/Love Productions)

One wrote: ‘Can’t watch #bakeoff tonight with my friends because there’s no subtitles… It’s unfair on me and other profoundly deaf people who rely on them. Not accessible at all…’

‘They’ve been without subtitles for a couple of weeks now but don’t seem to be in a hurry to fix it or provide an explanation/apology,’ echoed another.

A third frustrated fan commented: ‘It would be great to be able to watch this but STILL no subtitles.’

You know what’s worse than @Channel4 having no subtitles making their programmes inaccessible for deaf people?

Their silence on the issue. It took them 2 weeks to publish an apologetic statement.

We’ve had no timeframes for when this is going to be fixed too.

— Laura Alexandra 🐉 (@deafdragongirl) October 12, 2021

To: @Channel4
Re: #GBBO subtitles

— Kirsten MacQuarrie (@GGallerina) October 12, 2021

#GBBO Still no subtitles on @Channel4? I catch about 2/3 of the words – many others will be unable to access this – and your other programmes. When is this going to be sorted?

— Sarah Argent (@sargent65) October 12, 2021

So we are 4 weeks into the new series of @BritishBakeOff and still have no subtitles available. Come on @Channel4 please sort it out!!! 😢😢😢 #GBBO

— AJ Roberts (@AJ_TrueBlue) October 12, 2021

Still no subtitles #GBBO its pre recorded , how difficult can it be @Channel4 ? This is poor service

— Ginner T (@dathundo) October 12, 2021

‘Week 3 of no subtitles on #GBBO @Channel4 this is ridiculous now. Where is the timeline for getting this fixed?!’ asked another.

Channel 4 directed to their previously-issued apology saying: ‘We are really sorry that viewers still can’t watch our programmes with subtitles, audio description or sign language support. We know how important these access services are to you.

‘We have always been committed to supporting viewers with hearing or sight impairment very seriously, and realise how frustrating it is that you can’t enjoy your favourite programmes.

‘The reason we can’t currently provide access services is because of the severity of the incident on Saturday 25 September 2021. When we transferred to our emergency back-up, the system that was meant to provide access services, also failed.

‘Our engineers have been working around the clock to fix the problem. It is a priority for Channel 4. However, it is a complex process and will take some time.

‘However, when access services are fully restored, Channel 4 will make sure that all the programmes that you have missed will be available to watch with subtitles, audio description and sign language support.

The finale of Married At First Sight was affected last month (Picture: Channel 4)

Ofcom already expressed concern about the ongoing issue which is affecting many viewers’ experience of being able to enjoy their most-loved shows.

A spokesperson for the broadcasting watchdog told ‘The continued problems with subtitles, audio description and signing on several channels are unacceptable, causing deep upset and frustration among many people who rely on these services.

‘We are in direct contact with the affected broadcasters, and have called on them to provide a clear plan for restoring these services, and to explain how long it will take.’

Channel 4 has been plagued with issues in relation to the initial incident which occurred on September 25.

The issue saw programming stop completely for around 25 minutes on Channel 4 and Channel 5.

It’s led to various mishaps, including the transmission of the wrong episode of Married At First Sight UK, on the night it was due to air the series finale.

More: Channel 4

This saw the episode rescheduled to the following evening after fans were left baffled when the previous evening’s instalment was shown once again.

Great British Bake Off airs Tuesdays at 8pm on Channel 4.

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