Lib Dem viewing 'surreal and kooky'

Times Series: Downton Abbey is a hit with Tory TV viewers, researchers say (ITV/PA) Downton Abbey is a hit with Tory TV viewers, researchers say (ITV/PA)

Polling has revealed one of the deepest splits yet seen between Conservatives and Liberal Democrats - their choice of television viewing.

In research unlikely to smash any preconceptions, Downton Abbey, To The Manor Born and Foyles War were found to be among Tory favourites.

Liberal Democrats, on the other hand, have a penchant for comedy, satire and science fiction from Mock The Week to Doctor Who.

The analysis was done by pollsters YouGov who matched their data on voting preferences with responses to TV programmes past and present.

Drawing up a top 100 for each on the main parties suggested Conservatives liked a " somewhat sepia-tinted vision of Britain's better days", it said.

Dramas made up more than 40% of the list though Top Gear, Men Behaving Badly and A Question of Sport made the top 10.

Lib Dems' viewing habits on the other hand were centred on "surreal and kooky" shows - with 50% of the list comedies, by far the highest level..

Have I Got News For You, Mock The Week and topped their chart - along with Black Books, the IT Crowd, Brass Eye, Red Dwarf and Futurama.

Labour supporters, YouGov suggested, sought out "a wry but affectionate look at life in Britain as it really is for ordinary people".

Peter Kay's Phoenix Nights just pipped Coronation Street to top spot, with The Office and The Royle Family among other top picks.

"It seems that where both the Labour and Conservative parties appeal to the core voters with visions of Britain, albeit very different ones, the way to the Lib Dem heart may be to look elsewhere - to offer appealing visions of alternative futures and a left-field and humorous take on current affairs," the director of YouGov online Freddie Sayers said.

The top 10s as calculated by YouGov are

Conservative

1. Downton Abbey

2. Top Gear

3. To the Manor Born

4. Doc Martin

5. Spooks

6. Foyles War

7. Strictly Come Dancing

8. A Question of Sport

9. Men Behaving Badly

10. Hawaii Five-O

Labour

1. Phoenix Nights

2. Coronation Street

3. Father Ted

4. Never Mind the Buzzcocks

5. The Office

6. Mad Men

7. The Royle Family

8. Torchwood

9. The Wire

10. Frasier

Lib Dem

1. Have I Got News For You

2. Mock the Week

3. QI

4. Black Books

5. The IT Crowd

6. Brass Eye

7. Doctor Who

8. Red Dwarf

9. Futurama

10. Newswipe

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