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Having a barbecue as soon as the sun comes out, shouting ‘wahey’ when someone spills a drink in the pub – and being proud of where you are from are among the things which make you British, according to a survey.

Research carried out among 2,000 adults revealed the top 40 typically British traits, which also includes always having a stiff upper lip, being tolerant and being culturally aware.

Other classic British activities include dunking biscuits in tea, always talking about the weather and saying sorry too frequently.

More serious character traits, such as respecting LGBT culture, sharing your feelings and being supportive of immigration only just made it into the top 40, below more trivial things such as loving a trip to the pub and having a fry-up for breakfast.

The study was commissioned by Sky Arts to launch Art 50, where 50 artists have created pieces to show what it means to be British.

The results also identified differences between the generations.

More than half of over 60s see putting the kettle on in a crisis as typically British compared to just 36 per cent of millennials.

And while 42 per cent of pensioners consider it British to be proud of where you are from, just 19 per cent of younger adults agree.

Instead, millennials are more likely to consider a respect of LGBT culture as British (eight per of millennials compared to five per cent of over 60s) along with loving to hate the Royal Family (13 per cent of millennials compared to seven per cent of over 60s).

Phil Edgar-Jones, director of Sky Arts said: “As a nation, there are various traits and activities which people believe define Britishness.

“But many people think this definition is changing over time, especially thanks to the Brexit referendum and our exit from the EU.

“There is so much which is great about Great Britain, but the country is constantly evolving, leading to a different meaning to the phrase ‘being British’.”

The study found talking about the weather is considered the most British trait, followed by queueing for things, always having a roast dinner on Sundays and putting the kettle on in a crisis.

A love of fish and chips, going to pub and having a dry sense of humour are also thought of as typically British, along with good manners and not complaining about bad food in a restaurant.

But while 78 per cent of Brits would describe themselves as being typically British, the poll revealed that half think what it means to be British has changed over time.

Almost one in three think the definition of ‘typically British’ has changed since the Brexit referendum and another 33 per cent think it will evolve again following our departure from the EU.

And 29 per cent of Brits don’t feel they are able to show how proud they are of being British as much as they did before the referendum.

Despite this, 47 per cent are proud to be British, with another four in 10 saying they feel this way ‘a little bit’.

Just 13 per cent aren’t at all proud to be British.

But according to the research, carried out via OnePoll, while 44 per cent of the nation would describe themselves as British, 38 per cent would say they are English instead.

Just 20 per cent of Scots would describe themselves as being British, along with just a third Welsh folk and 37 per cent of those from Northern Ireland.

In comparison, half of those in Yorkshire would describe themselves as British rather than any other nationality along with 49 per cent of Londoners.

Researchers also found that the Brexit negotiations have left more than one in 10 wishing they had voted differently in the referendum after seeing how everything has played out so far.

If there was another vote now, 37 per cent would vote to leave while 46 per cent would vote to remain.

Although more than one in 20 have no idea how they would vote and 7 per cent wouldn’t vote.

It also emerged Queen is the music act most likely to leave us feeling proud to be British after being name the best of British, beating The Beatles, Elton John and David Bowie.

Phil Edgar-Jones added: “Having received over 1,000 applications, the Art 50 board commissioned 50 projects from both established and up and coming artists, from all over the UK, and across all ages and art-forms, that get to the heart of British identity: Who are we?

“The series, which is being produced by Storyvault Films, really celebrates the diversity and creativity of our nation and we are proud to be able to offer our customers a series that celebrates identity in the wake of Brexit.”

Art 50 appears on Sky Arts every night between Monday 25th and Thursday 28th March at 9pm

Top 40 signs you’re British

1. Talking about the weather
2. Queuing
3. Having a roast dinner on Sundays
4. Putting the kettle on in a crisis
5. Liking fish and chips
6. Using tea as a cure/fix for everything
7. Saying ‘sorry’ too frequently
8. Saying please and thank you
9. Dunking biscuits in tea
10. Going to the pub
11. Having a stiff upper lip
12. Having a dry sense of humour
13. Having good manners
14. Sarcasm
15. Eating fry ups for breakfast
16. Being proud of where you are from
17. Pulling together in a crisis
18. Not complaining in a restaurant when the food is poor
19. Having meals based on what day it is – like Fishy Friday
20. Having a barbecue as soon as the sun comes out
21. Holding the door open for someone when they’re unnecessarily far away so they end up running for the door
22. Wearing shorts and sunglasses the second the sun comes out
23. Respecting our elders
24. Moaning about our commute
25. Saying ”right” before you’re about to do something
26. Being tolerant
27. Being squashed on the train by a larger person and pretending you don’t notice when they are half sitting in your seat
28. Shouting “WAHEY” when someone drops a drink in the pub
29. Never letting your emotions get the better of you
30. Putting ketchup on everything
31. Uttering ‘Aaaah’ after taking a first sip of a cold beer
32. Loving to hate the Royal Family
33. Eating cucumber sandwiches
34. Always clearing your plate at dinnertime
35. Refusing to eat non-Heinz baked beans
36. Being culturally aware
37. Not swearing or using bad language
38. Respecting LGBT culture
39. Being open with your feelings and emotions
40. Being supportive of immigration


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