Top 5 events that make Brits proud to be British

A new YouGov poll asked Brits to pick up to four significant events from history that they felt made them proud to be British.

Here are the top five results.

5th – The reign of Queen Elizabeth II

To many, both in Britain and abroad, the monarchy is often synonymous with the UK and being British. Very few people alive today recall a time without Britain’s longest-serving moment, something that is being picked up on in this poll. 24% of respondents picked the reign of Queen Elizabeth, however, 31% chose this response just two and a half years ago, pointing to a significant decline.

There was a clear age split, with 38% of those aged 65 and over picking the monarch’s reign ahead of just 12% of 18-24-year-olds. Furthermore, 41% of Conservatives picked this option, dwarfing the 14% of Labour voters.

4th – The campaign for women’s suffrage

The poll comes out at the time of the 100-year anniversary of the Representation of the People Act (1918), which gave property-owning women in Britain over the age of thirty the right to vote in general elections. The poll suggests that 37% think the campaign for equal votes makes them proud to be British. 58% of feminists picked this option as did 30% of non-feminists.

3rd – The abolition of slavery

Slavery played an undeniable part in the British Empire, but it was eventually abolished across the UK and the colonies, dominions and other realms.

43% said the abolition of slavery in the 18th and 19th centuries made them proud to be British.

2nd – Standing alone against Hitler in 1940

When one thinks of Britain in the 20th century, a common image that comes to mind is the fight against fascism in World War Two. Resultantly, one in two respondents (49%) picked the fight against Hitler as something that made them proud to feel British, but what came first?

1st – The creation of the NHS

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the creation of the National Health Service, an institution which has become a central part of British life and British politics. Its existence is almost sacred, and it is resultantly an integral part of what it means to be British, with 69% of Brits saying it makes them proud to be British. The majority of respondents from all age-groups, parties and genders picked this option. Interestingly, 83% of those over the age of 65 picked the NHS’s creation compared to just 53% of 18-24-year-olds. Older voters are significantly more likely to vote Conservative, but they are the most likely to be proud of Labour’s greatest achievement.

What makes you proud to be British?

The full results of the poll can be viewed here.

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