Modern life is ‘killing’ Christmas traditions

16 per cent of us will skip the traditional Christmas turkey dinner. Picture: TSPL
16 per cent of us will skip the traditional Christmas turkey dinner. Picture: TSPL
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CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS such as midnight mass, carol singing and greeting cards are dying out - because modern life has taken over, according to a study.

A study of 2,000 adults found that 68 per cent will be too busy shopping to enjoy any traditional yuletide activities.

40% of us will also skip the Queen's speech. Picture: Contributed

40% of us will also skip the Queen's speech. Picture: Contributed

Just seven per cent will attend a Christmas Eve church service - and on Christmas Day, 16 per cent will skip the turkey dinner while four in ten won’t tune into the Queen’s Speech.


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Caroling is another tradition that is disappearing. Picture: TSPL

Caroling is another tradition that is disappearing. Picture: TSPL

One in ten of those polled by the Salvation Army said shopping is now the most important festive tradition.

Spokeswoman Major Val Mylechreest said: “It’s hard to ignore that when winter comes around there’s a huge emphasis on buying presents.

“Even from October we start to see decorations and ads on the high street pressuring us to prepare for Christmas.

“Though giving and receiving presents can make us feel great, it would be a huge shame to let the old traditions disappear due to shopping taking over.

“Taking a step back from wrapping gifts means we can really appreciate the time we have with family and friends at this time of year.”

The research also showed seeing faraway relatives is the festive event most commonly pushed aside for other Christmas priorities, such as shopping or preparing food.

A huge 74 per cent of adults said they won’t even consider singing a carol this Christmas.

Visiting the Christmas market and volunteering with a charity were revealed as other long-forgotten seasonal activities – whilst sending cards to family and friends was also listed.

Three in ten believe watching a panto is disappearing from Christmas traditions, and over a fifth of adults said that well-wishing your neighbours over the festive period is no longer common.

Shopping for presents has biggest prominence at Christmas, said 68 per cent who admitted they spend most of this period researching, shopping and wrapping gifts.

When it came to December 25th, half of all the adults polled said the day will be focused around food and chocolate in addition to the Christmas dinner.

Watching TV specials will take up most of the day, said over a third, whilst 17 per cent admitted that the kids will usually spend their time on tablets, phones and games consoles.

And 28 per cent said they won’t play traditional board games such as Charades or Pictionary, and four in ten won’t watch the Queen’s speech.

Amazingly, 16 per cent won’t even be tucking in to a traditional turkey roast, instead opting for a takeaway or a meal such as steak and chips.

The research also showed that a mere six per cent will use Christmas time for activities such as ice-skating, caroling or visiting Santa’s grotto - the same tiny amount that use it for charity-work or volunteering.

Major Val Mylechreest said: “It’s easy to become immersed in all the hustle and bustle of the modern-day Christmas.

“But this time of year should also provide a reason to help others who aren’t in a position to go shopping.

“We can do this by reaching out to our community and helping those in need as well as focusing on family and friends.”


Visiting far-flung relatives

Door-to-door caroling

Coal and oranges in stockings

Going to a pantomime

Visiting Santa’s grotto

Christmas Eve church service/midnight mass

Nativity plays

Visiting neighbours/helping the community

Watching the Queen’s speech

Playing board games on Christmas day

Preparing a traditional turkey dinner

Sending greeting cards

Saying ‘Merry Christmas’ to strangers


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