As the cat’s out the bag, after this Sunday Mirror story (they had the story when they called, even though the plan wasn’t to announce it yet), I can now tell you that come mid-September I’ve got a new prime time (7.30pm) show starting on ITV1. I’m delighted, as I think in current climes it’s important to see investment in popular current affairs consumer journalism, and I’m delighted ITV is committing to it.
It’s also a big step up for me personally. While I’ve had my own ITV daytime series, and prime time on Channel 5, to have a prime time show on ITV1 is quite daunting – especially as ITV’s working title is "The Martin Lewis Money Show".
While that certainly does what it says on the tin, it leaves me with mild palpitations as there’s huge pressure on a show with my name in the title. I may see if I can persuade them to soften it to "Martin’s Money Show", which may be a bit friendlier (let me know what you think – and any suggestions).
This week we’ve got the first meeting to discuss the exact format and who my reporter will be. The agenda’s pretty simple, to save people as much cash as possible in each 30-minute programme (well, I suspect it’s actually about 21 after advertising time). There’ll be more than one topic a show, likely to be a hard money subject like Premium Bonds, student finance or tax credits, then one soft money topic such as reclaiming lost Tesco points.
Watch this space (or ITV1, more accurately).