The Kennel Club has today announced that dog lovers worldwide will be able to see the action from Crufts 2009 live on the internet for the first time in the show’s history.
The live webcast will follow all of the events in the Arena programme, from Heelwork to Music and Agility to the Best in Group and Best in Show judging and the ever popular Friends for Life competition that rewards our dog heroes. There will also be a new element to the Arena programme where the winners of the We Love Our Dogs competition - which invited all dog owners to send in video clips and photographs of their happy, healthy dogs - will be announced. Peter Purves and Frank Kane will provide commentary for the live web stream, which will be interspersed with features showing the interviews and action from outside the Arena.
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club spokesperson, said: “Dogs and their owners look forward to Crufts every year and this live webcast will enable people, wherever they are in the world, to continue to watch the show and celebrate with us the diverse role that dogs play in society.
“This year’s webcast will allow audiences to feel like they have a seat in the Arena, as they view the wide range of events and competitions from the shows classes and agility displays, to Friends for Life which celebrates our dog heroes.
“We are proud of Crufts and are pleased to go online this year because, although the show will no longer be on the BBC, we know that it is the world’s best platform to bring together those organisations and individuals who care about dogs, so we can continue to make a positive difference to dogs’ lives. We have the continued support of many high profile veterinary organisations and dog welfare charities and want to ensure that we continue to engage the support of those dog lovers who are unable to get to the show.
“Of course, there are many other wonderful elements to Crufts outside of the Arena, which enable people to discover more about dogs and what is being done, and what they can do, to help continually improve the health and welfare of dogs. We will cover as much of this action as possible through the webcast but people will really need to come along to the event in order to benefit from the whole Crufts experience and to help us to make a difference for dogs. We are especially pleased to bring to the internet the complete broadcast of the Obedience competition through our catch-up service – only through the internet are we able to broadcast this internationally popular competition.”
Former Blue Peter Presenter, Peter Purves, who will provide some of the commentary for the online webcast, said: “Crufts is one of my favourite times in the year and 2009 will be an exciting show. There are 28,000 dogs participating – with the third highest competitive entry in the show’s long history – and a diverse programme that celebrates all that we love about dogs.
“I’m really pleased that the Kennel Club has decided to take the show online, enabling the thousands of dog lovers who look forward to Crufts every year to see a slice of the action. It also shows the world what all of those who love the event know to be true; that it is a big hearted and fun celebration of happy, healthy dogs and everybody is invited to join in.”
The news about the live webcast comes after the Kennel Club announced that Crufts FM will broadcast live on 106.8fm from Wednesday 4th March, until 10pm on Sunday 8th March within a 5km radius of the NEC, Birmingham. This means that those driving to the NEC will be able to listen to the latest news from the event. Those who are a bit further away from the action will be able to listen to Crufts FM via the web on the Crufts website, www.crufts.org.uk.
The Crufts live web stream will be available throughout the four days of Crufts, from the 5-8 March and will run from 8.30 in the morning through to the end of the Arena programme. The Crufts TV live stream will be free to view anywhere in the world by simply following the link on the Crufts homepage www.cruftslive.tv. For those who miss the action there will also be a catch up video on demand service for paying subscribers, enabling people to watch the replays of the action.
Notes to editors
* The TV live webcast will be available from 8.30 on Thursday 5th March at www.cruftslive.tv and will be free for all viewers, anywhere in the world.
* From 8.30 on Friday 6th March Crufts fans will be able to subscribe to the Crufts TV Catch Up Video on Demand service. This will be accessible from the Crufts TV section of the official Crufts website and allow viewers to watch replays and extracts from the previous day’s events.
* The Video on Demand clips will follow the event structure of the Arena day and each event within the day’s programme will be broken into approximately 3 clips of 10 minutes each, for optimum user viewing experience.
* The catch up TV ticket pricing will be £1.99 per day and £9.99 for a complete ‘access all areas’ ticket until the service is closed at the end of March.