BBC to Cancel 'Top of the Pops'

The British Broadcasting Corp. announced Tuesday that it is canceling "Top of the Pops," its flagship music chart show, after more than four decades on the air.

BBC director of television Jana Bennett said the show, which first appeared in 1964, would air for the last time on July 30.

"We're very proud of a show which has survived 42 years in the U.K. and gone on to become a worldwide brand, but the time has come to bring the show to its natural conclusion," she said.

"Top of the Pops" has featured everyone from The Beatles and The Rolling Stones to Nirvana and the Spice Girls. At its peak, the weekly rundown of Britain's best-selling acts attracted more than 15 million viewers.

The show has suffered flagging ratings in recent years as it faced competition from cable and satellite music channels and the Internet. Last year it was moved from the main BBC1 channel to BBC2, which attracts a smaller audience.

In a statement, the BBC said that "in a rapidly changing musical landscape 'Top of the Pops' no longer occupies the central role it once did."

Bennett said the BBC remained committed to music, and announced a slew of new shows, including a rock history series entitled "The Seven Ages of Rock."