This classic has been named the nation's most-loved children's book

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has been named the nation's most-loved children's book.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has been named the nation's most-loved children's book.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has been named the nation's most-loved children's book.

Three of Roald Dahl’s children’s novels dominate the top of a list of the best bedtime stories with The BFG coming second, and in third place, Matilda.

Nineteenth century author Beatrix Potter came fourth, with classic the Tale of Peter Rabbit. Meanwhile, Scots authors Julia Donaldson and JK Rowling also made the list, with The Gruffalo and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

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AA Milne came fifth on the list with the much-loved Winnie the Pooh, detailing the honey-loving bear’s adventures with Christopher Robin.

The study, commissioned by Sky to mark the launch of its Christmas Eve drama Roald & Beatrix: The Tail Of The Curious Mouse, found that 79 per cent of the parents polled said classic children’s books were their favourite ones to read to their kids.

It also found 53 per cent of the 1,500 parents polled said they most enjoyed reading their little ones books that they themselves had loved as children.

And 31 percent of parents said they still today thought about the stories they’d been read to when children, with 63 per cent claiming that classic books were unbeatable as the stories were so “fantastic and timeless”.

The study found that the average British parent of young children reads to their offspring 18 times a month - more than every other night. Over two thirds of mums and dads said they love reading to their kids as it makes them feel close to them, while 53 percent relish seeing how involved their children get in the story.

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Over a third say they enjoy the chance to put on funny voices, 46 per cent says it fires up their kids’ imaginations, and 45 per cent love helping them settle before bed with a story.

Meanwhile, 83 percent of the parents polled claiming their kids would choose a bedtime story over an evening videogame session any night of the week.

The study also found that 39 per cent of the parents of under 11 year olds polled said they’d read more to their children this year because of the extra time they’ve had together since the pandemic started.

Around 29 per cent admit they have rediscovered the joy of reading to their kids - and 22 per cent said it had been a huge comfort in difficult times.

Comedian Bill Bailey, who stars as the Bona Fide Gent in Sky’s drama Roald & Beatrix, recounted his memory of his favourite Beatrix Potter books.

He said: “I had the entire set of them on a lovely book shelf and I loved them. The first one would have been Peter Rabbit, I think. It’s a testament to how much they mean to you. They make such an impression, certainly they did on me. I could remember Mrs Tiggy-winkle, Squirrel Nutkins, Appley Dapply: all of them. They were just lodged in my memory because they were so different to everything else that was around when I was a kid.”

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