Last Christmas, a 1984 Christmas number one for Wham!, is the most played seasonal song of the last five years, it has been confirmed.

According to the Performing Rights Society (PRS), the body responsible for collecting royalties, the Wham! hit pipped the original recording of Do They Know It's Christmas? by Band Aid.

The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl's Fairytale of New York was named in third, having made the news last year when Radio 1 backed down over plan to censor the song, following scores of complaints from listeners.

All I Want For Christmas Is You, by Mariah Carey, finished fourth, while Bruce Springsteen's 1975 live recording of Santa Claus Is Coming To Town rounded off the top five.

Other artists named in the poll included Wizzard and Slade.

Jona Lewie, whose 1980 single Stop the Cavalry was named in sixth by the PRS, said he remained proud of his biggest hit.

"The only time you might hear the song would be at Christmas, so that's not very often throughout the year.

"I'd like to have seen Greg Lake's track [I Believe In Father Christmas] in there, and Elvis Presley's Santa Claus Is Back In Town - it would have been nice to get a bit of blues in there," he told BBC News.

The top ten most played Christmas songs are:

1 Wham!: Last Christmas
2 Band Aid: Do They Know It's Christmas? (original recording)
3 The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl: Fairytale of New York
4 Mariah Carey: All I Want For Christmas Is You
5 Bruce Springsteen: Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
6 Jona Lewie: Stop The Cavalry
7 Wizzard: I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday
8 Slade: Merry Xmas Everybody
9 Mudd: Lonely This Christmas
10 Bing Crosby: White Christmas

29/11/2008 01:01:01