The Pogues’ “Fairytale of New York” misses out on UK’s “Christmas #1” milestone

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While the bells may be ringing out for Christmas Day, The Pogues‘ “Fairytale of New York” won’t be the #1 Christmas single in the U.K.

The beloved 1987 tune came in at #6 on the latest edition of the U.K.’s Official Singles Chart, which will cover the week of Christmas. The #1 spot went to the Wham! holiday classic “Last Christmas” — a journey which took 39 years.

Getting the #1 single on the Official Singles Chart for Christmas is a coveted accomplishment in the U.K., and fans often organize campaigns to get their favorite songs to the top. You may recall such a campaign successfully made Rage Against the Machine‘s “Killing in the Name” the #1 Christmas single in 2009.

Several fan initiatives for “Fairytale of New York” to be the Christmas #1 have been launched over the years, but the closest it came was #2 in 1987. With the death of Pogues frontman Shane MacGowan on November 30, fans hoped 2023 would finally be the year, and the Irish band even supported the campaign with a reissued vinyl single, which raised money for charity.

There had also been a fan campaign to get AC/DC‘s “Thunderstruck” the Christmas #1 this year, but organizers ended up postponing the initiative so that “Fairytale of New York” could have a better chance of securing the top spot, in honor of MacGowan.

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