While 2012 celebrates the Diamond Jubilee and London hosting the Olympics, it is history that makes people most proud to be British.
A survey commissioned by Channel 4 from Ipsos MORI found that more people (45%) are proud to be British due to the country’s history than they are because of the Royal Family (28%). And more people cite the NHS (37%) and the armed forces (36%) as a source of pride than they do the Royals. British sports teams come in at a lowly 10%. Bringing up the bottom of the table is British business, with only 4%.
Overall, which two or three of the following, would you say makes you most proud to be British?
1. Our history (45%)
2. The NHS (37%)
3. British Army / armed forces (36%)
4. The Royal Family (28%)
5. Our culture and arts (24%)
6. Our system of democracy (22%)
7. Having a free press / media (15%)
8. British sports teams (10%)
9. Our position in the world (5%)
10. British business (4%)
Timed to coincide with, Make Bradford British, a documentary series exploring what it means to be British, the survey also found that a ‘good sense of humour’ (45%) topped the poll when people were asked what are the best characteristics of British people, followed by friendly (34%) and tolerant to all sections of society (30%).
But while being funny may be the best British characteristic, of those surveyed, half (50%) said the worst was drinking too much. Ignorance of other cultures (33%) and complaining too much (23%) were also cited. And a fifth of respondents thought the worst characteristic was being lazy (20%).
While fish and chips is seen as the national dish by four in ten Britons (41%) just one in ten (9%) say it is their favourite food. Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding tops the poll as the nation’s favourite dish (33%).
And while 15% enjoy a curry as their meal of choice, only 8% think it’s the national dish.
Make Bradford British continues on Thursday 8 March at 9pm on Channel 4