The tradition of Christmas No.1 bets in the UK is one of those mysteries of marketing like the fashion industry or why people pay for films at the cinema online gratis and for free, if we’re honest about it, that make no real sense. However so many rites in our society now legitimize themselves purely by existing in the first place that this novelty wager is now rapidly becoming as much of a conservative institution as Christmas itself. But just who do the bookies think will grab the crown this year?
UK gambling laws have long permitted novelty wagers of all sorts. Long before wagers on The Great British Bake Off, Big Brother and I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, made it seem like the novelty betting universe was entirely based around reality TV, people were wagering on the weather at Christmas, particularly the likelihood of a “White Christmas” however the rise of the pop charts gave ample room for further festive wagers and the Christmas No.1 bets paradigm became part of Xmas.
Christmas No. 1 in the UK
- Clean Bandit – 1/16
- David Clark – 5/1
- Rag N Bone Man – 12/1
- Tomlinson & Aoki – 16/1
Of course Christmas No.1 bets may seem wasteful, however for vast swathes of society this sort of disposable fun wager helps make the season seem special, and over the years there’s been some great Christmas No.1 songs. The Beatles and I Want To Hold Your Hand in 1963, Queen with Bohemian Rhapsody in 1975, and Pink Floyd with Another Brick In The Wall in 1979 to name but a few however there were a few howlers in there too….and a period in the late nineties when the Spice Girls got it three years in a row.
Christmas No.1 Bets Back Bandits In 2016
Naturally no band hoping for a Christmas No.1 bets on a miserable tune and typically they’re all quite jolly, although Band Aid with “Do They Know It’s Christmas” is one exception, with some of the best known tunes of the season that still assail us from store PA systems as we shop classics of the genre. Slade with Merry Christmas Everybody, Mud and Lonely This Christmas and, of course, Boney M with Mary’s Boy Child. It’s just a shame that the list of Christmas No.1 songs in the UK also contains some horrors.
Bob The Builder with Can We Fix It? Benny Hill with Ernie The Fastest Milkman In The West? Really? That’s our cultural celebration of the death of a gay Jewish activist hippy 2000 years ago? Honestly? Back in 1980 the Xmas No.1 was There’s No One Quite Like Grandma from St. Winifred’s School Choir? Listen to it. I’m surprised the Russians didn’t nuke us as a kindness. If you like to bet on sports in the UK perhaps Christmas No.1 betting is not for you, but there’s just as much misery involved as conceding any last minute game winning goal in the English Premier League I assure you.
Bet365 Has All The Festive Novelty Bet Books
This year the bookies like Bet365 are offering odds on the contenders so lets take a look at what Christmas No.1 bets are available in 2016 starting with some of the outsiders. Dead but not forgotten David Bowie is in there at 100/1 with Greg Lake at about the same odds, and the Military Wives Choir may have halved those odds, but that won’t make much of a difference, and The London Hospices Choir likewise seems stuck on about 50/1. After which it’s a hotch-potch with Louis Tomlinson and Steve Aoki getting 16/1 for their efforts.
Technically within range of winning any Christmas No.1 bets placed upon them Rag N Bone Man only get 12/1 at best, and that’s slipping fast frankly, leaving just two real contenders for the title this year, Clean Bandit and Little Mix. Or at least it did till Rangers fans got in on the act attempting to make Dave Clark and Glad All Over the Christmas No.1 instead of Rockabye by Clean Bandit. Clark is now getting 5/1 to get it as the campaign goes viral, but the bandits are still on 1/16 so that might be a case of too little too late and I wouldn’t bet on UK gambling news headlines reporting the crowd chant classic beating out the young and shiny.