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Thursday, 31 January, 2002, 11:41 GMT
Simpsons 'more interesting' than Royalty
The Simpsons
The Simpsons: Bigger than the Royal family
Young people find the cartoon Simpson family more interesting than the Royal family, according to a survey of 16-to-24-year olds.

Sixty-six per cent of those surveyed by Market Opinion and Research International (Mori) said they were interested in the lives of The Simpsons, compared with 18% who said the same about the Royal family.

Only one in five of the respondents could accurately recall the names of all four of the Queen's children.

But nearly half could name the three children of the character Peggy Mitchell in the BBC's soap opera EastEnders.

The Royle family
The Royles are also 'more interesting' than their near-namesakes

The lives of Jim, Barbara, Denise and Dave in the BBC sitcom The Royle Family also proved more popular, attracting the recognition of 39% of young people.

The poll also found that just 15% of those questioned across all age groups were planning to attend a street party or other event marking the Queen's Golden Jubilee.

Six in 10 said they would be treating the four-day Golden Jubilee weekend in June - which marks 50 years of the Queen's reign - like any other holiday.

However, interest in the Royal family's activities held up better among the older generation.

Fifty-four per cent said they were interested in the Royal family, compared - for example - with 10% in the soap opera Coronation Street.

Overall, 70% of all respondents said they wanted to keep the monarchy, while 21% favoured abolition.

'Extravagant'

Two-thirds rated Queen Elizabeth II and her family as hardworking and highly respected.

On the other hand, 55% said the Royal family was "extravagant", and 70% said the monarchy was "out of touch with ordinary people".

The poll was carried out for ITV's Tonight with Trevor McDonald programme.

Mori interviewed 1,000 adults aged 16 and over by telephone throughout Britain in December.

The poll's release coincided with that of the 32nd Social Trends survey by the Office for National Statistics (Ons).

The Ons survey revealed that almost 4.5 million households now subscribe to satellite and 3.3 million to cable TV providers.

See also:

28 Nov 01 | TV and Radio
Queen tours UK broadcasters
22 Jun 00 | Entertainment
Homer and Bart head for Britain
13 Jan 00 | Entertainment
Wahooo! Simpsons celebrate 10 years
23 Mar 01 | Reviews
The Simpsons go Wrestling
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