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Weekly Edition - Published  19 December 2015


Local News Report - Mobile Page


Merry Merseyside nabs Christmas Number 1 Top Spot

EVER wondered which region of the UK is responsible for all those cracking Christmas hits? Thanks to Oxford Consultants for Social Inclusion (OCSI), we now know that the Liverpudlians amongst you are the most likely to come up with a winning festive formula. Since OCSI loves a good map, the company's intrepid research team set about mapping data on the origin of all UK Christmas number one chart toppers from 1952 to 2014; all in the name of science.

Using OCSI's Local Insight tool, which allows you to map any postcode-based data you can think of, the team worked through a list of all UK Christmas number ones, mapping the postcodes of each artist based on their birthplace or childhood home, and how long they spent at number one.

Individual artists were tagged with a single postcode, while collaborative efforts were broken down into individual locations for each band member. Each of these were weighted based on whether the person in question was in a band (for example the weeks at number 1, for every Spice Girls song were each divided by 5).

Several packets of mince pies later, the research team (with the help of the Local Insight tool) had generated a score for each location in the UK, with Liverpool narrowly edging London into 2nd place, with scores of 22 and 21 respectively.

This excellent map shows exactly where in the country these Christmas crackers originated, and how long they lingered on after the tinsel was put back in the attic. Why not see if your home Town is featured?

The darker red patches show the areas where artists spent the most weeks at number 1 and the green patches show artists who spent fewer weeks at number 1. So what gives Liverpool the edge?

Well, it is the birthplace of all four Beatles, who had four Christmas number ones in the 60s. And, as 1⁄5 of the Spice Girls, Liverpool's Mel C had 3 Christmas hits in the 90's.

London didn't do too shabbily either. Home to a fair few bands in their heyday (Pet Shop Boys, Pink Floyd and East 17), it also produced a couple of Spice Girls and a host of X Factor survivalists.

Next on the list is South of London, boosted by the Military Wives, Mr Blobby and comedian Benny Hill, while The Midlands (home to arguably the best Christmas song with Slade's 'Merry Christmas Everybody') came in a respectable fourth with a couple of members from Queen, and Bob the Builder (of course).

Scotland is represented by Band Aid's Midge Ure and X Factor's Leon Jackson. In Wales we have Tom Jones and Shakin' Stevens and in Ireland there is Westlife, 1 of Girls Aloud (with that classic Christmas song 'Sound of the Underground') and Bob Geldof heading up Band Aid, Band Aid II and Band Aid 20.

For a more detailed analysis of the results and to find out whether your region featured, see OCSI's recent blog post.


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