Christmas number ones: Every single UK Christmas chart topper since 1952

6 November 2020, 17:20 | Updated: 16 November 2022, 13:34

Slade, Shakin' Stevens and East 17
Slade, Shakin' Stevens and East 17. Picture: BBC/Youtube/Epic/London

By Tom Eames

Find out what was Christmas number one in the year you were born, with a list of every UK Christmas number one from 1952 to 2019.

The Christmas number one is a very British phenomenon, with other nations not really having anything similar. But in these parts, thanks to Slade, Wham, Mariah Carey and co, it has become an institution, where a crazy array of artists have battled it out for the coveted spot for over half a century.

The concept of the Christmas number one arguably didn’t really exist until 1973, when Slade took on Wizzard for festive pop supremacy. Since then, countless artists – some human, some not-so-human, have tried with various levels of success to get the crown.

Retroactively, chart gurus then applied the victor of the Christmas number ones to every year since the UK singles chart properly began in 1952.

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In case you didn’t know, to earn the Christmas number one, you have to be announced as the number one single on the week in which Christmas Day lands.

From charity records, X Factor winners, cartoon builders, boybands, sausage rolls and some actual Christmas songs, we're presenting you a handy list of every single Christmas number one since 1952, as reported by the Official Charts Company.

And if you're wondering where the likes of Wizzard, The Pogues, Wham! and Mariah Carey are, then you'll have to check out our list of songs that didn't quite get to the Christmas number one spot.

1952: Al Martino - 'Here In My Heart'

1953: Frankie Laine - 'Answer Me'

1954: Winifred Atwell - 'Let's Have Another Party'

1955: Dickie Valentine - 'Christmas Alphabet'

1956: Johnnie Ray - 'Just Walkin' in the Rain'

1957: Harry Belafonte - 'Mary's Boy Child'

1958: Conway Twitty - 'It's Only Make Believe'

1959: Emile Ford and the Checkmates - 'What Do You Want to Make Those Eyes At For?'

1960: Cliff Richard & The Shadows - 'I Love You'

1961: Danny Williams - 'Moon River'

1962: Elvis Presley - 'Return to Sender'

1963: The Beatles - 'I Want to Hold Your Hand'

1964: The Beatles - 'I Feel Fine'

1965: The Beatles - 'Day Tripper/We Can Work It Out'

1966: Tom Jones - 'The Green Green Grass of Home'

1967: The Beatles - 'Hello Goodbye'

1968: The Scaffold - 'Lily the Pink'

1969: Rolf Harris - 'Two Little Boys'

1970: Dave Edmunds - 'I Hear You Knocking'

1971: Benny Hill - 'Ernie (The Fastest Milkman in the West)'

1972: Little Jimmy Osmond - 'Long Haired Lover from Liverpool'

1973: Slade - 'Merry Xmas Everybody'

1974: Mud - 'Lonely This Christmas'

1975: Queen - 'Bohemian Rhapsody'

1976: Johnny Mathis - 'When a Child is Born'

1977: Wings - 'Mull of Kintyre'

1978: Boney M - 'Mary's Boy Child/O My Lord'

1979: Pink Floyd - 'Another Brick in the Wall'

1980: St Winifred's School Choir - 'There's No One Quite Like Grandma'

1981: The Human League - 'Don't You Want Me'

1982: Renee & Renato - 'Save Your Love'

1983: The Flying Pickets - 'Only You'

1984: Band Aid - 'Do They Know it's Christmas'

1985: Shakin' Stevens - 'Merry Christmas Everyone'

1986: Jackie Wilson - 'Reet Petite'

1987: Pet Shop Boys - 'Always on My Mind'

1988: Cliff Richard - 'Mistletoe & Wine'

1989: Band Aid II - 'Do They Know It's Christmas'

1990: Cliff Richard - 'Saviour's Day'

1991: Queen - 'Bohemian Rhapsody/These Are the Days of Our Lives'

1992: Whitney Houston - 'I Will Always Love You'

1993: Mr Blobby - 'Mr Blobby'

1994: East 17 - 'Stay Another Day'

1995: Michael Jackson - 'Earth Song'

1996: Spice Girls - '2 Become 1'

1997: Spice Girls - 'Too Much'

1998: Spice Girls - 'Goodbye'

1999: Westlife - 'I Have a Dream/Seasons in the Sun'

2000: Bob the Builder - 'Can We Fix It?'

2001: Robbie Williams & Nicole Kidman - 'Somethin' Stupid'

2002: Girls Aloud - 'Sound of the Underground'

2003: Gary Jules & Michael Andrews - 'Mad World'

2004: Band Aid 20 - 'Do They Know It's Christmas'

2005: Shayne Ward - 'That's My Goal'

2006: Leona Lewis - 'A Moment Like This'

2007: Leon Jackson - 'When You Believe'

2008: Alexandra Burke - 'Hallelujah'

2009: Rage Against the Machine - 'Killing in the Name'

2010: Matt Cardle - 'When We Collide'

2011: Military Wives - 'Wherever You Are'

2012: The Justice Collective - 'He Ain't Heavy He's My Brother'

2013: Sam Bailey - 'Skyscraper'

2014: Ben Haenow - 'Something I Need'

2015: Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Choir - 'A Bridge Over You'

2016: Clean Bandit, Sean Paul and Anne-Marie - 'Rockabye'

2017: Ed Sheeran - 'Perfect'

2018: LadBaby - 'We Built This City'

2019: LadBaby - 'I Love Sausage Rolls'

2020: LadBaby - 'Don't Stop Me Eatin''

2021: LadBaby, Elton John & Ed Sheeran - 'Sausage Rolls for Everyone'