‘O Holy Night’ voted the Nation’s Favourite Carol in our annual Christmas music poll

25 December 2023, 14:55

Aled Jones and Malakai M Bayoh sing ‘O Holy Night’

By Maddy Shaw Roberts

For the eighth year running, ‘O Holy Night’ has been voted the best-loved Christmas carol of all time.

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The Nation’s Favourite Carol is our annual poll, where we ask you to vote for your favourite Christmas carol.

And in 2023, for the eighth year in a row, ‘O Holy Night’ has been voted to the No.1 spot.

It’s a carol of French origin, composed in 1847 by Adolphe Adam. A tale of humanity’s redemption, the ‘Cantique de Noël’ is a much-loved favourite in our annual countdown, and is thought to have been the first carol played on the radio.

Still adored over 170 years later, the carol went viral last Christmas when Aled Jones performed it in a duet with boy treble Malakai Bayoh for Classic FM, the video garnering tens of millions of views around the world.

Elsewhere in the Nation’s Favourite Carol chart, there were three new entries in this year’s Top 30 – ‘Shepherd’s Pipe Carol’, ‘Bethlehem Down’ and ‘Wexford Carol’.

Three carols climbed six places in the Top 30 compared to last year’s chart: ‘Sussex Carol’, ‘Candlelight Carol’, ‘Jesus Christ the Apple Tree’. And the carol that fell the most places was the lullaby ‘Away in a Manger’.

‘O Holy Night’ performed by the choir of St Bartholomew the Great at Classic FM's Carols by Candlelight
‘O Holy Night’ performed by the choir of St Bartholomew the Great at Classic FM's Carols by Candlelight. Picture: Annabel Staff

Alexander Armstrong revealed the Top 30 on Christmas Day from 1-3pm on Classic FM. Listen to the programme again here on Global Player, the official Classic FM app.

Top 30 Christmas carols

  1. O Holy Night
  2. In the Bleak Mid-Winter - Gustav Holst version
  3. Carol of the Bells
  4. Silent Night
  5. In the Bleak Mid-Winter - Harold Darke version
  6. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
  7. O Come, O Come Emmanuel
  8. O Come All Ye Faithful
  9. O Little Town of Bethlehem
  10. Once in Royal David’s City
  11. Joy to the World
  12. Coventry Carol
  13. Gaudete
  14. It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
  15. God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
  16. Sussex Carol
  17. Candlelight Carol (Rutter)
  18. In Dulci Jubilo
  19. Jesus Christ the Apple Tree
  20. The Three Kings
  21. Good King Wenceslas
  22. The Holly and the Ivy
  23. Away in a Manger
  24. Shepherd’s Pipe Carol
  25. Gabriel’s Message
  26. See Amid the Winter’s Snow
  27. Star Carol (Rutter)
  28. The First Nowell
  29. Bethlehem Down
  30. Wexford Carol
The Nation's Favourite Carol with Viking on Classic FM
The Nation's Favourite Carol with Viking on Classic FM. Picture: Classic FM

Explore The Nation’s Favourite Carol Top 30 here.