Christmas Day 'to feature TV rows'
Families in Northern Ireland are set to spend almost eight hours in front of the box this Christmas Day.
However while everyone will be together round the television, there may not be much agreement about what to watch as a survey on viewing habits found there will be an argument over what channel to pick in one in five homes.
The research by TV Licensing also revealed regional differences over traditional Christmas favourites. Viewers in Northern Ireland rated National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation as their most loved festive film, while in the rest of the UK the Jimmy Stewart classic It's A Wonderful Life was the top choice.
Vintage classics Only Fools And Horses and Morecambe And Wise were the nation's favourite comedy shows, but in Northern Ireland almost one in five would most like to watch Gavin And Stacey. The results found that the ideal amount of time to watch comedy specials was 50 minutes, with 45 minutes set aside for the soaps.
In a bid to resolve any rows over the remote, TV Licensing suggested a recipe for a harmonious day of viewing. It recommended: A very large bunch (nearly two hours) of feature film; a generous handful (50 minutes) of Christmas comedy specials; a large cupful (45 minutes) of soap opera, and a small cupful (40 minutes) of children's TV programmes.
It also suggested a generous dollop (30 minutes) of drama/mini-series; a few spoons (20 minutes) of documentary/factual viewing; a few spoons (15 minutes) of sport and a sprinkling (15 minutes) of Queen's Speech.
In the UK as a whole, sports programmes divided the sexes the most, with 31% of women saying they would watch sport on Christmas Day, compared to 45% of men.
The survey also revealed that men are most likely to be in charge of the remote control over Christmas, with 39% of people selecting fathers, partners and grandfathers as the main culprits.
"The coming together of families and friends to watch television on Christmas Day is almost as much of a tradition as opening presents or eating turkey," said Deborah King, TV Licensing spokeswoman in Northern Ireland.
"But, with a packed TV schedule to choose from, it can be difficult to agree on what to watch. Everyone in a household will have their own favourite programmes, and it is all about compromise."