Neighbours: how many episodes of Australian soap are there, how to watch old episodes in the UK as series ends

After almost 40 years of the show, Neighbours is coming to an end - this is how you can watch old episodes in the UK

Neighbours first aired on Network Ten in Australia in 1985 and was first screened in the UK on BBC One a year later.

In 2008, the show moved to Channel 5 in the UK and received the majority of its funding from the channel.

In February this year, Channel 5 announced that it was dropping the soap and would cut all funding - the following month it was announced that Neighbours would be cancelled.

(left-right) Stefan Dennis Annie Jones, Geoff Paine, Guy Pearce, Lucinda Cowden, Ian Smith and Paul Keane

The last ever episode of Neighbours aired in Australia on 28 July, with old cast members returning to give the show a proper send off.

Can you watch old episodes of Neighbours in the UK, how many episodes of the soap are there, and when does the finale air? This is everything you need to know?

How many episodes of Neighbours are there?

The first episode of Neighbours aired on 18 March 1985, and introduced us to the residents of Ramsay Street.

Since then, the show has broadcast almost 9,000 episodes over 38 seasons. The exact number of episodes, though figures vary, is estimated to be 8,901.

Over that time, the show has had many landmark moments - Charlene and Scott’s wedding was a high point, watched by nearly 20 million people when it aired in the UK in 1988.

Other memorable moments include Harold’s return from the dead, Bouncer the dog’s strange dream sequence, Helen’s death, and David and Aaron’s wedding - the first legal gay wedding to be shown on Australian TV.

Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan are back for Neighbours: the Finale.

The most prolific Neighbours actor is Stefan Dennis, who played Paul Robinson in 4,638 episodes between 1985 and 2022.

Alan Fletcher played Karl Kennedy, who had that infamous affair with his wife’s best friend, and appeared in 4,357 episodes.

Can you watch old episodes of Neighbours on TV in the UK?

When the finale of Neighbours airs in the UK it will truly be the end of an era, and many fans of the soap will want to revisit old episodes.

There’s good and bad news on that front. The good news is that some old episodes will be available to watch after the finale ends, but the bad news is that they won’t be around for long.

Episodes that were broadcast on Channel 5 in July will be available to watch on My 5 for a month, meaning that the last episodes will leave the platform on 27 August.

After that, it’s slim pickings for UK Neighbours fans - partial episodes are available to watch on the Neighbours official YouTube channel. Unfortunately that’s about it.

Aside from flying out to Australia for your holidays, where repeats of the show will still be broadcast regularly, there won’t be much opportunity to see the show if you live in the UK.

One final glimmer of hope is Neighbours - The Farewell Tour, which will be coming to the UK in March 2023.

The tour will feature interviews with cast members live on stage, footage of classic episodes, and a Q and A section.

For those still in need of an Australian soap fix, Home and Away will continue airing on Channel 5, and is replacing Neighbours 1.45pm slot.

When is the finale of Neighbours on TV in the UK?

The finale will air on Channel 5 in the UK at 9pm. It is an extended episode and will run for 65 minutes.

It will see the return of major cast members including Margot Robbie, Guy Pearce, Kylie Minogue, and Jason Donavan as they say an emotional goodbye to the long-running soap.