The Christmas Number 1 has become a national institution ever since the first festive chart-topper was announced in 1952. Al Martino claimed the coveted spot that year with ‘Here In My Heart’.

Over the years, we’ve enjoyed a whole host of fantastic Christmas tunes. From Fairy Tale Of New York to Do They Know It’s Christmas and even from Rage Against The Machine.

A growing Xmas tradition is taking a small punt on who you think will top the charts on Christmas Day. UK bookmakers will take bets on who will win Christmas Number 1 spot for 2024.

We may be a little early in our predictions, but hey, we love Christmas, and it’s never too early to start speculating on who will donning their holiday jumper as they dance around the tinsel-drenched Christmas tree.

Below we take a look at the contenders for 2024 and the historical winners of the race to top the charts on the 25th.

Christmas Number 1 Odds 2024

Of course, these are subject to change as different artists release charity songs and Christmas specials in the run-up to the big day.

So keep coming back if you think your favourite will make it to the number 1 spot!

 

Artist Odds
The Pogues 0/0
Wham! 0/0
Mariah Carey 0/0
Sam Ryder 0/0
Taylor Swift 0/0
Dua Lipa 0/0
The Beatles 0/0
Slade 0/0
Ed Sheeran 0/0

If you’re looking to put a wager on this year’s Christmas No.1, go to Betfred using the link below.

Once you’ve signed up, click on ‘All Sports’ in the main menu and navigate through ‘Specials’ then ‘Novelty’ and to ‘Christmas Specials 2024’.

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2024 Christmas Number One Contenders

As you can imagine, as we get closer to Christmas Day, the pressure to get the number one increases a lot.

That said, there are a few big hitters in the music world that will be releasing new music in November and December, any of which could be the elusive number one song.

Or will a classic outdo them all?

The Pogues – Fairytale of New York

When Shane McGowan, lead singer of The Pogues, and all round writing genius, died on November 30th 2023, it was genuinely expected that Fairytale of New York would hold on to the number one spot for Christmas.

In what will come as a surprise to many, Fairytale of New York has never actually reached the Number 1 spot at Christmas.

The odds were slashed, and radio stations the length and breadth of the country played it night and day.

But somewhere around mid-December Wham! started climbing the charts, and by the time the official standings were announced, George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley had clinched the coveted top spot.

Will The Pogues have another shot in 2024? We can only wait and see.

LadBaby

The unstoppable YouTube star wrote himself into the history books with five consecutive number one Christmas singles but a sixth was not on the cards.

He decided against releasing a new charity song telling The Metro, “After five amazing years we’ve decided to pass the baton over to the Great British public and we’re not going for Christmas number one this year.”

Of course, that doesn’t mean he won’t be back in 2024 but it will be a few months yet before he makes his plans public.

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift is now officially a billionaire after the success of her worldwide Eras Tour in 2023 and 2024.

Given that Swifties are so passionate about the singer, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see her top the charts on December 25th.

Taylor Swift has now equaled Madonna’s record as the female artist with the most UK number-one albums with her 11th studio album, The Tortured Poets Department, on 19 April 2024.

It is her 12th number one on the Official Albums Chart, and given that she occasionally drops a surprise record, she could very well be topping the charts again in December.

Ed Sheeran

While he doesn’t necessarily have a new album or song due out, Sheeran does tend to collaborate on a Christmas charity song, and 2024 should be no different.

In 2021 he not only put out Merry Christmas with Elton John but also a version of Sausage Rolls for Everyone with LadBaby AND Elton John.

Both hit the number 1 spot, but not in the week that counted! Can he do better in 2024?

Wham! Takes Top Spot In 2023

They were number two in 2022, but finally, for the first time EVER Wham! made Last Christmas the number one Christmas song in 2023.

Originally released in December 1984, it will be the 40th anniversary of the song this year and given that its popularity never seems to wane, it is very likely that it will be hovering around the top again in 2024.

To date, the classic tune has sold over 1.93 million physical copies and downloads, which has made it the eighth best-selling single of all time in the UK.

The Best Christmas Tunes

Back in 2017, presenter Richard Osman hosted a ‘World Cup of Christmas Songs’ event on his Twitter profile. After days of voting, Fairytale of New York from The Pogues and Kirsty McColl came out on top against the classic Last Christmas from Wham!

A playlist on Spotify celebrates the ‘100 Greatest Christmas Songs Ever’. It features the usual classics from the likes of Michael Bublé, Chris Rea and Shakin’ Stevens.

In 2023, All I Want for Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey was announced as being the most streamed Christmas song on the platform.

To date (and this number will increase), the song has been streamed 1,809,902,409 times – that’s BILLION by the way!

Past Christmas Number One Songs

2023

For the first time in the the 39 years that the song has been hitting the airwaves, Last Christmas finally made it to number one for Christmas in the UK.

With 1.5 Billion streams on Spotify and over 1.9 million sales, Andrew Ridgeley was thrilled when he finally made history.

Speaking to the Official Charts, he said: “Yog [George] said that he wrote Last Christmas with the intention of writing a Christmas Number 1.

“That was the challenge; the goal that he set for himself.”

It may have taken nearly 40 years but he did it.

2022

The irrepressible LadBaby was back for his fifth consecutive Christmas number 1 in 2022.

The Food Aid video featured Martin Lewis and other special guests with 100% of profits from every download of the recording going towards the fight against food hunger.

2021

LadBaby – Sausage Rolls For Everyone
Deviating from the parody songs, in 2021 LadBaby instead released a new Christmas single featuring Elton John and Ed Sheeran.

The song Sausage Rolls For Everyone is based on a 2021 number one, “Merry Christmas” which topped the charts for the duo.

2020

LadBaby – Don’t Stop Me Eatin’
For 2020, the couple announced their Christmas single entitled Don’t Stop Me Eatin’, a parody cover of “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey.

2019

LadBaby – I Love Sausage Rolls
In 2019 the Hoyles released a second Christmas charity single called I Love Sausage Rolls, another parody and cover of Alan Merrill’s “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll”.

As with their previous single, all proceeds went to The Trussell Trust.

2018

LadBaby – We Built This City on Sausage Rolls
In December 2018, the Hoyle couple released their charity single, a parody cover of Starship’s 1985 single We Built This City.

It debuted at Number 1 with all profits going to The Trussell Trust.

2017

Ed Sheeran – Perfect
Perfect became the Christmas number-one song for 2017 and peaked at the top of the charts in sixteen other countries. The song comes from the album ÷.

The video has more than 3.5 Billion views on YouTube – no wonder it went to number one!

2016

Clean Bandit featuring Sean Paul and Anne-Marie – Rockabye
Rockabye became the first song in chart history to become Christmas number one after already being at the top of the charts for six weeks.

In total, it spent nine weeks at number one in the UK Singles Chart while also topping the charts in over 20 other countries.

2015

Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Choir – A Bridge Over You
A Bridge Over You is a charity single recorded and released independently by the Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Choir.

It is a mashup of ‘Bridge over Troubled Water’ by Simon & Garfunkel and Coldplay’s ‘Fix You’.

Could we see a similar charity single reach number 1 in 2023?

2014

Ben Haenow – Something I Need

Something I Need is a cover of a song originally recorded by the American rock band OneRepublic.

British artist Ben Haenow released the cover as his winners’ single following his victory in the 2014 edition of X-Factor.

Surprise Xmas No.1 Songs

2009

Rage Against The Machine – Killing In The Name

Rock band Rage Against the Machine won one of the most competitive battles for the Christmas number one in 2009.

The band’s single, Killing In The Name, sold 500,000 downloads beating X Factor winner Joe McElderry’s The Climb by 50,000 copies to clinch the top spot.

The success of the song was mostly down to a Facebook campaign designed to prevent an X-Factor number one.

Watch Rage Against The Machine live at Finsbury Park in June 2010.

2000

Bob The Builder – Can We Fix It?

According to the Official Charts Company, this song sold over one million copies in the United Kingdom. It beat Westlife’s What Makes A Man to the coveted top spot in 2000.

1993

Mr Blobby – Mr Blobby

Mr Blobby was produced by Paul Shaw and David Rogers and was released on November 22nd 1993. Despite its great success in the charts, many consider it one of the worst songs ever recorded.

1991

Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody/These Are The Days Of Our Lives

These Are The Days Of Our Lives was released as a single in the United States on Freddie Mercury’s 45th birthday, September 5th 1991.

Then again as a double A-side single in Ireland and the United Kingdom on December 9th, in the wake of Mercury’s death, with another classic Queen track Bohemian Rhapsody.

1984

Band Aid – Do They Know It’s Christmas

An iconic charity single. The song by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure was in reaction to television reports of the 1983–1985 famine in Ethiopia.

It was first recorded on November 25th, 1984 by Band-Aid, a supergroup put together by Geldof. It contained many of the most prominent British and Irish musical acts at the time.

How Much Money Do Christmas Songs Make?

Research carried out for Channel 5 in 2016 attempted to find the answer about which Christmas earned the most in royalties and concluded that the following tunes were the most lucrative Christmas songs…

Amounts vary significantly between artists, but songs such as Merry Xmas Everybody by Slade which earns £1 million in royalties​​.

Other notable examples include White Christmas by Bing Crosby at £365,000 and Last Christmas by Wham! at over £300K.

Mariah Carey, in particular, has earned substantial royalties from her Christmas hit All I Want For Christmas Is You, grossing $1.55 million in annual recording royalties each time the song’s master recording is played or sold.

Additionally, she can earn up to $830,000 in publishing royalties​​. It is alleged that over the years, she has accumulated over $60 million in royalties from this song alone, also benefiting from streaming, merchandise, and specials​.

Most Christmas Number 1’s?

LadBaby with five. He bagged the number one songs each year from 2018 to 2022. In 2022 he beat the record previously held by The Beatles.

The Beatles had managed FOUR Christmas number one singles, three of which were in consecutive years from 1963 to 1965.

The fourth was Hello Goodbye in 1967 when they also held the Number 1 and Number 2 spots at the same time.