Watch a TV or radio show being made (Part 1)

Things to do in Britain when you're broke skint no money free cheap by Penny Golightly watch TV radio show being recorded

Ready for some fresh Things To Do In Britain When You’re Broke inspiration? Today’s idea is to find some free tickets to watch a television or radio show being recorded.

Many television and radio shows are recorded in front of a live audience, and they always need bums on seats. Apply for tickets using some of the resources below, and you and your bum should have a good chance of being successful.

Most studio audience events are slightly oversubscribed and operate on a first come first served basis, so it’s important to arrive a little early to get a good place in the queue. If you turn up later you may not get in, unless you’ve been given a special priority ticket that fully guarantees entry.

If you can’t attend an event that you’ve been given tickets for, remember to contact the organisers and let them know so they can invite someone else instead (let a company down and they’ll soon stop offering you tickets).

Here’s a brief introduction to the best places to look for free tickets to recordings, including major channels and the agencies and studios they use. It’s a worth visiting the official web pages for specific shows sometimes too.

Applause Store

This is one of the biggest free audience ticket distributors. Shows include X Factor, BBC Top Gear, Britain’s Got Talent, Take Me Out, Celebrity Juice, And & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and many more. They also offer paid tickets and show merchandise.

Lost In TV

Shows covered include The Chase, BBC’s Children In Need, Surprise Surprise, National Lottery In It To Win It, Football Tonight, Derren Brown TV specials, and The Cube.

SRO (Standing Room Only) Audiences

Shows on offer include Loose Women, Lorraine, Alan Carr: Chatty Man, The Apprentice: You’re Fired!, The Graham Norton Show, Live at the Apollo and Mock the Week.

Shows mainly focus on comedy, and pilot and one-off recordings. Past shows include Al Murray’s Happy Hour, The Frank Skinner Show and 8 Out Of 10 Cats. Current offerings include Russell Howard’s Good News.


The UK’s largest provider of free tickets, with over 1000 shows each year. Everything from lectures to science, and from panel shows to live music, including Later…With Jools Holland, Strictly Come Dancing, The Reith Lectures and A Question of Sport.

This isn’t an exhaustive list, so stay tuned for the next part of this article!

Which TV or radio show, past or present, would you love to be in the audience for?

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  1. I did this a few weeks ago to see Alan Carr’s Chattyman. You are not wrong when you say get there on time – we were there for bang on the time it recommended and only 10-20 people were allowed in after us! The queue stretched for miles! It was a great night out though!

  2. Hi Hannah – they’re always oversubscribed, so turning up early’s the best option. Glad you had a great night out.

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