They're just like us - honest

Gordon Brown

Gordon Brown

David Cameron

David Cameron

Nick Clegg

Nick Clegg

As the election campaign draws to a dramatic close, the leaders of the three major UK parties have made great efforts to show themselves as real people. So what do we know about their passions away from politics?
Television
Simon Cowell Gordon Brown is a huge fan of the Simon Cowell brand of reality TV. He has spoken several times about his love of ITV's X Factor and Britain's Got Talent. The prime minister has also said he enjoys watching the American high school musical drama Glee. Silent witness David Cameron enjoys gritty dramas and murder mysteries including Midsomer Murders and Silent Witness. Admits to watching the comedy drama Shameless - "It's quite addictive because it's so awful." He lists the 1970s classic Porridge as his favourite sitcom. Come dine with me Nick Clegg particularly enjoys cookery show Come Dine With Me. "I just find it extremely amusing watching these people in taxis, after they've had dinner at someone else's house, saying 'I thought their cheesecake was rubbish and their steak was too rare'."
Music
Chris Martin of Coldplay Gordon Brown is a fan of The Beatles, Frank Sinatra and Motown. He told BBC Radio 1 he liked Coldplay because the bassist is from his home town, Kirkcaldy. But he has denied he is a fan of the Arctic Monkeys, but has praised the Sheffield band's alarm clock-like music which "would wake you up in the morning because of the noise". Lilly Allen Shows a penchant for indie bands including The Killers, The Smiths, Radiohead, Pulp and Blur. His favourite album is The Queen Is Dead, by The Smiths. Mr Cameron also has a soft spot for Lily Allen's music so much so that he gave Barack Obama a collection of CDs as a gift, which included the London singer's album. Prince He might have former Roxy Music keyboardist Brian Eno as his youth adviser but Mr Clegg says he's more of a classical man. The Liberal Democrat leader says he's partial to a "rip-roaring piece of Rachmaninov" or a "soulful Johnny Cash" number. He has also confessed he was once a fanatical fan of 80s pop phenomenon Prince but "got over it".
Films
Sophie Okonedo of Hotel Rwanda The PM's top film is Hotel Rwanda, an historical drama which documents a Kigali hotelier's bid to save the lives of Rwandans caught up in the 1994 civil war. Has also heaped praise on Chariots of Fire. Peter O'Toole Lists the 1962 multi Oscar-winning classic Lawrence of Arabia, starring Peter O'Toole, among his cinematic favourites. Others include Where Eagles Dare and The Guns of Navarone. Francois Begaudeau, star of The Class The Liberal Democrat's leader is full of praise for The Class, the 2006 Oscar-nominated French film about a year in the life of a racially diverse inner-city school in a tough Parisian neighbourhood.
Food
Rumbledethumps Picked rumblede-thumps, a traditional Scottish dish, when asked to submit a recipe of choice for a charity cookbook. Made with potatoes, cabbage, cheese, butter and herbs, it is very similar to colcannon, and bubble and squeak. pasta Rich Italian sausage meat pasta with half a pint of double-cream was Mr Cameron's recipe of choice when he was asked to submit one for charity. He's also partial to pork belly and slow-roast lamb with home-grown vegetables. cake Has spoken of his "joy" of food from Spain, where his wife Miriam comes from. "My favourite is heavenly deep-fried croquetas made with flour, cheese and ham." Also has a sweet tooth, and likes cakes, breads and buns from his Sheffield constituency.
Biscuit
choc biscuit Anything with chocolate on it. oat cakes Oatcakes with butter and cheese. rich tea Rich Tea if dunked. Hobnobs if not.
Sport
football Mr Brown is a big football fan, who loves watching Premiership games with his inner circle. His team of choice is Raith Rovers - the PM used to sell programmes for them as a child. His favourite sport at school was rugby. It was during a school rugby match that he got a kick to the head which left him blind in one eye. darts David Cameron says he watches a lot of different sports and recently he has professed a passion for darts in particular. He says he "loosely" supports Aston Villa. A keen tennis player, he captained his college team at Oxford. A famous advocate of cycling, and is often seen jogging. skiing Is an "obsessive skier" who tries to play tennis once a week. According to one of his school friends he has a "stylish topspin forehand". Mr Clegg says he does not have a specific football team of choice. Although not a sport, he has practised transcendental meditation for years.
Books
Wangari Maathai Gordon Brown's top five tomes include Unbowed - the memoirs of the Kenyan environmentalist and women's rights campaigner Wangari Maathai - a Nobel Peace Prize winner. Robert Graves Good-Bye to All That by WWI poet Robert Graves. The book, a memoir, is an account of the cruelty and degradation of trench warfare by this officer in the Royal Welch Fusilier. The Leopard Lists Giuseppe Lampedusa's The Leopard, about life during Italy's unification, among his favourite reads. He has also noted JM Coetzee's Life & Times of Michael K.
Celebrity Crush
Cheryl Cole A confessed X Factor fan, Mr Brown also has a soft spot for one of the judges. When asked to name a celebrity crush he picked Cheryl Cole. "This is going to be controversial, isn't it?," he told Marie Claire. "She's done an amazing job". Debbie Harry Singer Debbie Harry, of Blondie, was Mr Cameron's pick when asked who he liked as a schoolboy. He also picked out Ms Cole when shown a Girls Aloud calendar, but prefers Dannii Minogue when it comes to X Factor judges. Dannii Minogue The Liberal Democrat leader is not a member of the Cheryl Cole fan club it seems. When asked to name his favourite X Factor judge out of Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole, Dannii Minogue or Louis Walsh, he replied "none of the above".


Compiled by Rajini Vaidyanathan and Ian Haigh.




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